25 DEC 2019

The darker side of Christmas

Lock your doors and block your chimney…

Happy Christmas one and all. We know the only gift you want this year is more Curiosity of a Child. This episode Anton explores some strange and funny traditions from around the world. Then things get a bit darker when I look at the history of St Nicholas.It's nearly midnight here and Santa will be arriving soon so I better get to bed and pretend to be asleep as so of what I read is rather scary!If you’re in the Christmas spirit please leave us a lovely review.

Full show notes coming soon.


This transcript is automatically generated so may contain errors.

Welcome to the curiosity of a child.

What day is it today?

It's Christmas.

Eve is a excited yes, so you have been I've needed squad excitable today fidgety, desperate for the day to pass and get onto the big event tomorrow.

I've been trying to do things that pastime quickly. Yeah, so I've decided to go to bed early as well.

I don't think you sleep though.

Play football earlier in the Muddy Okay. So what have we got on our little Christmas special episode then? What's coming up?

Well, I am doing a list of quirky things that are quite nice about Christmas, some traditions.

Yes, and quirky Christmas traditions. And then I look at some of the darker side of Christmas as we look at some of the origins of Santa Claus.

Done, done, done.

So should we get on with the show then?

Move the show.

Anton investigates Christmas.

So let's kick this Christmas special Lantern investigates off with the Naughty Ghost Boy who's this? So in South Africa they leave out cookies for Santa to munch on.

Sounds good to me.

Yeah, but one year there was a boy called Danny and he ate all the cookies that were meant to be for Santa.

He knows fatter Santa them.

So it's very nice.

What happens?

So after that she got caught by his grandmother and his grandmother killed him.

Seriously, do you think Bonnie would do that to you? I think it's really give you another biscuit.

Yeah, for the iPod down have.

So now Danny haunts children as a ghost and he's called the Naughty Ghost Boy.

Okay, so he haunts the naughty children at Christmas so this isn't our Halloween special again.

Well, you could say that if you would have met our our ghosts that we've got.

Here okay sboi yeah yeah we have a ghost boy living with us. Don't worry yeah.

And at the moment we are trying to getaway from him inside our den that's.

Right so we built yeah.

Yes, every Christmas. Every Christmas holiday, every school holiday we build it then fee to sleep and date me yeah.

Now there's actually another traditions do with guests at Christmas, isn't there?

Ohh yeah, so in Portuguese tradition they would have breakfast with ghosts so they layout their table and everything, but have maybe a few extra moves for the ghosts.

So that you ever leave spaces for them to come and join them at the table.

Yeah, this is called consoder nice.

Where they bring in the souls of the dead to enjoy your Christmas.

Meal sold is off the dead.

Now, staying on the Iberian Peninsula, there's another rather funny tradition which doesn't involve ghosts this time.

Yes, I've gone to Spain now and in their nativity scenes they have a boy at the back.

Yeah, poo seriously doing a pee yes so.

Next to baby Jesus.

Play Jesus is normally at the front, says pretty hidden behind one of the.

Behind the donkey, something donkey. So I want to have that started under those some cheeky children. Once you are changed, yeah started doing that.

Now there's actually another funny poo related tradition in Spain.

And this is the Christmas log, which sounds rather innocent. But actually what the family does is they will have a log which they will feed up before Christmas.

Great is nice and fat and then when they put it on the fire.

They will start bashing it with a stick and command that poops out presents.

Wonder if that ever works before.

I don't think so, so that's another odd one. I mean, we're just a tradition like that come from.

Really weird.

Do you remember our winner from the Halloween special?

The monster battle yeah yeah, the web of.

Yeah, so you may have only thought that was Halloween, but it's also an Christmas, seriously.

Yes, so do you know anyone born on Christmas?

Um, just supposedly baby Jesus.

Okay, so if you were born on Christmas Day, you could be a werewolf.

So maybe that explains how he managed to turn water into wine because he's got magic werewolf powers.


Now this could explain a lot then.

And as we saw only Halloween special, the werewolf won the battle, which might explain.

The Easter Storey where he comes back to life after getting put on the cross.

And we will some debt.

Zombies, zombies are. Yeah, some people with Jesus. Sorry, trying to say.


Now moving on to Ukraine.

So you've all got Christmas trees. Normally I'd put some bull balls, maybe some candy canes.

But I bet you won't see any spider webs on them.

Now it would be dusting myself, yeah?

So in Ukraine there was a Storey about a really nice spider. Yeah, and he saw that.

There was a family too poor to put any decorations on the Christmas tree, so he spun a web all night to cover the Christmas tree.

That would have looked like snow. Have you seen these photos? Actually, there's been a flood then. All of these spiders have had to go up into little tiny bit of land and have covered entire trees and cars and things with their website, and it looks like snow wallpaper covering everything.

Yeah well nice spider.

And that's why we don't squash them, even that one of your bed the other night, which is there for about 3 days.

So yeah, it was one of my all finished off game.

On to our next one. This is a very strange one. A family sauna from a stonier.

Okay, so quite near the Ukraine then yeah.

So are there spiders in the sauna?

No, just heat, yes.

So you have to well pick clothes off.

Everything right now.

Not right now.

Don't do that. Your family good. This is a podcast. And yeah, visual.

Yeah, with you all family right and everyone gets into the same is the same so.

Now you have a naked Christmas family sauna. I'm not sure that tradition will catch on here.

Yeah, when we do our live recording of our Christmas party tomorrow, I don't think we'll be doing that now.

Now you could try to bring it up though, yeah.

But then I think one of the best things about Christmas is the food. Yeah, I mean, I love the feature this year. Having goose, which I've not tried before.

Yeah, I haven't tried it either. I think it's going to taste quite like Duck and I do like duck. Yes well onto our last one.

So normally have Turkey. We're having goose, yeah, but I bet you've never had deep fried caterpillars.

I've not had those, but I have had.

Crickets worms I've had. I've had caterpillars as well. Yeah, before I've eaten caterpillars and I've had worms, crickets, a type of bug, another time.

So, do you get just one Caterpillar for the family and this stuff it? I mean that bit small.

Yeah, well it depends how many you can find okay?

Most I don't mind insects and you love them.

You amazing you, are you well?

Yeah, until you get the leg stuck in your teeth or something for cricket, start crying.

Okay, Cool says that you're quirky.

Traditions for Christmas then?

Yeah, it's going to yours there a bit more spooky I've heard.

Yeah, so let's move on to another feature here about the history of Santa Claus.

Santa Claus goes by many names. Father Christmas Father Frost Saint Nicholas the history set necklaces that we're looking at today.

Now he was a 4th century Bishop from the Greek town of Myra, which is now a part of modern day Turkey. His family was relatively well off how his parents died when I was really young.

So he decided to give away their wealth and see if he could help other people. However, 302 to 3/4 AD he was imprisoned by my favourite Emperor Diocletian. Well yeah, yeah, yeah. See dietitian. He persecuted some questions, which obviously isn't very nice, but I just like that he retired to break up bridges and I loved his name directly. So yeah, I think it's really cool.

My favourite Birmingham Pride is poopy anus.

But there's some darker storeys to do with Nicholas, so the town of Myra was hit by a famine and the people are going hungry and his.

Food drought then?

You have free drought, and famine is a feature out. Then there was a family there, but they were quite rich so they had money, but they had no food.

And the parents of reading Week. So one day was the father was at work, the mother sent her children out to go and get food, and so she gave him some coins. And off they went. Then they found an in.

And then the innkeeper. Kind of seeing how rich they were decided to invite them in. But he promised them a good meal.

But we really wanted to do was take their money.

Yeah, now the father came home from work and the children went home yet and it's starting to get dark.

So they were worried a little bit and their mother was really, really worried and the father said don't worry, they probably gone off to the next town.

Then midnight came and I still went home. So he started to really worry as well.

Then morning came and still no sign of their children, so they thought what they should do is go and see their local Bishop who happened to be Saint Nicholas.

How would you feel if I disappeared for a day?

Elated at 1st and then devastated.

So they went to Saint Nicholas last, if he could help them and he began to spread the word saying please look for these three children.

And he got people like his Contacts, his agents throughout the town.

And not long later, somebody mentioned that they saw three boys heading into this in.

So you said Nicholas went to visit the innkeeper just to find out what had happened upstairs at the end, he met one of the innkeeper servants and he asked, have you seen these three boys? And these servants says yes, yes, we did. The innkeepers taken downstairs right into the cellar. So think this is likely just going on here. So he goes down the stairs. I imagine with staff as well. Yeah, and like clattering on the.

As he's walking down the steps, it's quite kind of authoritative.

Think he's putting his big hat on? He always looks like a wizard. Yeah, yeah?

So you guys down the stairs to the cellar and kind of pictures from the door and then he finds the innkeeper and he's he's got a.

An apron on and spattered with blood, and he's kind of just sealing up a barrel and cynical as he looks around the Sally. And there's no sign of the children but the innkeeper. He's looking kind of ashamed of himself, and what he done, say Nicholas asks him, and he says that he chopped the children up, and he's going to pick with him in the barrel of vinegar.

So this is something from before the Christmas. Yeah, he.

He reaches into the barrel and he touches, probably with his eyes closed. Oh my God, my God.


It was a true believer.

It's not just the children he brings him back to life. He performed a miracle and the innkeeper.

He's kind of, say, relieved that there probably terrified by what he's done, but Luckily

Saint Nicholas forgave the innkeeper.

Because he told the truth.


So that's kind of a miracle performed here by technical, and this is some reason why he's like their patron Saint of children.

But a few of the storage boxes Nicholas as well. So in the year 325 there's the Council of Nicaea. Now this was a meeting early on in Christianity, where different groups of priests and bishops.

Sing God with the same thing and some thought they were separate things and Jesus was the son of God.

So it's a lot of theological debate. Okay, the details aren't important here. All you need to know is here some pictures Santa here with his arm raised Santa Claus aka Saint Nicholas.

He punched another Bishop called Aerius.

And laid him out because they were arguing for sale on different sides of the debate. No, she's got a good fisting them. So he saved. Children have been chopped up and now he's punched another Bishop.

He's been a boxing miracle man.

Now the Dutch call him Sinterklaas.

Centre class, which is where we get Santa Claus from. So 5th of December would be sick. Nicholas's Eve I think if I remember properly now. Position guys that.

Every year on this day.

He would go round and visit children and also spread throughout Europe. So people go and visit Jordan like bishops and things and ask them if they've been naughty or nice that year. Now they were good. They get sweets.

But if they were bad, they would be punished.

Done, done, done.

But not, but not by sinterklass, but by a devil called. I'm going to get this wrong.

I'm 70, P at wasn't Internet's black, Pete.

Carried a Birch stick with him since from a tree yeah like a branch and he also carried a big sack.

Sound familiar?

Sack of presents probably not.

Mate, so if Saint Nicholas, aka Sinterklaas, aka Santa Claus aka Father Christmas father Frost. If it's very angry he would get Slack Peter to put on the children in his sack and carry them away and then of course the other children would be terrified and there be crying and tell me it right. I want realistic sound effects.

Yes, they'll be trying once there's settle down a little bit chubby would be brought back in the sack, so it's just a warning, however.

If the next year the same thing happened again.

The children will be all taken away in the sack or the naughty ones and taken to hell.

Also, that's how you get to how.

Are you going to sleep well now, knowing that there are these old traditions there because you know Santa is real? Yeah speaks, he's had to reinvent himself throughout the years. There's many other storeys like this throughout European culture, so that is the darker side of Christmas.

Would like to wish all of you a very happy Christmas.

Yeah, Jolly, Jolly Christmas.

Ohh and no sneaking some poo people under nativity.

Yeah, and make sure you leave the cookies for Santa.

Yeah right you did you said bye.

Yeah, I make sure you Haven answer your questions, otherwise you'll be put in a second centre. How nice friendly Christmas advice there. Yeah yeah fabulous. Now it's getting really hot in your den. I think we should stop recording before we pass out.