# After Hours

## General discussion

• Creator
Topic
• #2208339

### Why I don’t believe in Santa Claus

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by robo_dev ·

I. There are approximately two billion children (persons under 18) in the world. However, since Santa does not visit children of Muslim, Hindu, Jewish or Buddhist religions, this reduces the workload for Christmas night to 15% of the total, or 378 million (according to the Population Reference Bureau). At an average (census) rate of 3.5 children per house hold, that comes to 108 million homes, presuming that there is at least one good child in each.

II. Santa has about 31 hours of Christmas to work with, thanks to the different time zones and the rotation of the earth, assuming he travels east to west (which seems logical). This works out to 967.7 visits per second.

This is to say that for each Christian household with a good child, Santa has around 1/1000th of a second to park the sleigh, hop out, jump down the chimney, fill the stockings, distribute the remaining presents under the tree, eat whatever snacks have been left for him, get back up the chimney, jump into the sleigh and get on to the next house. Assuming that each of these 108 million stops is evenly distributed around the earth (which, of course, we know to be false, but will accept for the purposes of our calculations), we are now talking about 0.78 miles per household; a total trip of 75.5 million miles, not counting bathroom stops or breaks. This means Santa’s sleigh is moving at 650 miles per second — 3,000 times the speed of sound. For purposes of comparison, the fastest man-made vehicle, the Ulysses space probe, moves at a poky 27.4 miles per second, and a conventional reindeer can run (at best) 15 miles per hour.

III. The payload of the sleigh adds another interesting element. Assuming that each child gets nothing more than a medium sized Lego set (two pounds), the sleigh is carrying over 500 thousand tons, not counting Santa himself. On land, a conventional reindeer can pull no more than 300 pounds. Even granting that the “flying” reindeer could pull ten times the normal amount, the job can’t be done with eight or even nine of them — Santa would need 360,000 of them. This increases the payload, not counting the weight of the sleigh, another 54,000 tons, or roughly seven times the weight of the Queen Elizabeth (the ship, not the monarch).

IV. 600,000 tons traveling at 650 miles per second crates enormous air resistance — this would heat up the reindeer in the same fashion as a spacecraft re-entering the earth’s atmosphere. The lead pair of reindeer would absorb 14.3 quintillion joules of energy per second each. In short, they would burst into flames almost instantaneously, exposing the reindeer behind them and creating deafening sonic booms in their wake. The entire reindeer team would be vaporized within 4.26 thousandths of a second, or right about the time Santa reached the fifth house on his trip. Not that it matters, however, since Santa, as a result of accelerating from a dead stop 650 m.p.s. in .001 seconds, would be subjected to centrifugal forces of 17,500 g’s. A 250 pound Santa (which seems ludicrously slim) would be pinned to the back of the sleigh by 4,315,015 pounds of force, instantly crushing his bones and organs and reducing him to a quivering blob of pink goo.

V. Therefore, if Santa did exist, he’s dead now.

(author: unknown)

PS: doubt that it would matter if Santa held his digital camera up to a power line in the process 🙂

## All Comments

• Author
Replies
• #2444186

### Oh Well

by cmiller5400 ·

In reply to Why I don’t believe in Santa Claus

Whomever wrote that must have had absolutely nothing to do 😉

• #2444181

### Never mind the anti-grav sled and reindeer propulsion.

by seanferd ·

In reply to Why I don’t believe in Santa Claus

Neither of these things have been explained to my satisfaction- oh, wait, magic!

This is why I don’t believe in equally ludicrous things.

But I do actually believe in Santa Clause, I just don’t take the cover story seriously. You’re supposed to be able to figure out where the love comes from by the time you are four or five.

As for the calculations, you’ll have to note that not all Christians think that Christmas is an acceptable thing, and don’t celebrate it. Also, many Christians don’t have the same sort of Santa Clause legend as the American commercial Santa of the last century (although the American legend insinuates that Santa visits everyone, so YMMV). There is a large whack of variation there plus or minus, for the math. Probably best to compute the two outlier numbers. Then the Whole World Santa Clausists can argue it out with the Limited Recipients Santa Clausists. (Who may also form a socio-politcal agenda arm: The Intelligent Delivery Santa Clausists who want to make sure that this sort of math is not taught in schools.)

Oh. 😉

• #2444160

### Misnomer:

by ansugisalas ·

The “Whole World Santa Clausists” are called Holoclausists, actually – and interestingly, many Intelligent Delivery Santa Clausists are also “Holoclausist Deniers”, holding that not being a Christian is a subset of “being naughty”, and is in fact anathema to being “nice”:(

• #2444162

### Santa’s secrets…

by ansugisalas ·

In reply to Why I don’t believe in Santa Claus

A) He’s using slave labor.
B) He has more ringers than Saddam Hussein did (though probably less ringers than Saddam has now)
C) He controls an Aleph, a point in space which is all points in space; so he doesn’t actually have to go anywhere.
D) He also has a time-compacting-and-storing device; so he only actually has to stuff 188394 presents per day into the aleph (378000000/5.5/356), using a time delay to have them appear at the appropriate time… working around the clock (see points A and B, above) that makes it a relaxed work speed of 2,18 presents per second – every second of every hour of every day of the entire year 😀 :p

You noticed the calculation error in the text quoted in the OP, right? It took 378mil of christians, then divided that by 3,5 children per household > Now, I know that Jesus says that only little children make anywhere near acceptable christians, but I doubt that was figured into the census data – So, to get the number of christian households, you have to add the parents too (hence 5,5 in my calculation above).

• #2444136

### Easiest solution, he has a massive number of star trek transporters

by slayer_ ·

In reply to Why I don’t believe in Santa Claus

That’s how he can deliver presents so fast, he never even leaves the north pole anymore.

• #2444126

### No you misunderstand

by hal 9000 ·

He only has 1 Star Trek Transporter but it’s set to Beam Him Down to all Points Simultaneously so he only has the 1 delivery per landing.

Of course the millions of Beamed Down Santa’s get recombined when they get Beamed back up so there is only one.

He has Special Star Fleet Dispensation to use the Transporters that way and it’s strictly forbidden for anyone else to use them in such a way. Chief O’Brien worked it out and then Kirk through a Mishap traveled back in time and that’s why we now have Santa. 😉

Col

• #2444102

### OH. My. God

by nicknielsen ·

In reply to No you misunderstand

Santa Claus is actually William Shatner? :^0

• #2444081

### So Santa does live on the North Pole, after all :)

by ansugisalas ·

In reply to OH. My. God

No text, no warning!

• #2445910

### ba-haha

by purpleskys ·

In reply to OH. My. God

what a horrid visual

• #2444135

### Or maybe he has been outsourced to china

by slayer_ ·

In reply to Why I don’t believe in Santa Claus

There is more than enough Chinese to visit every household at night, and most would fit down a chimney.

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