There was shock across the nation Friday when sources at the North Pole confirmed what had been long feared among flying-reindeer aficionados. Santa Claus has sold Blitzen to a petting farm.
The move was not wholly unexpected. For years now Blitzen has refused to pull his weight, claiming that he should have a Christmas song named after him and not that "red-nosed freak" Rudolph. Though Mr. Claus had attempted to placate Blitzen with a spot closer to the front, it was apparent to most observers that sooner or later the "Blitzen situation," as experts called it, would come to a head.
That apparently happened on Thursday, when Mr. Claus arrived at the reindeer house to find Blitzen trying to organize a reindeer strike on Christmas Eve. Though Blitzen claimed it was just a "reindeer game," Mr. Claus evidently had had enough.
"At first Santa wanted to sell him to a slaughterhouse, but we talked him out of that," said Valerie Skippy, reindeer handler at the North Pole.
According to spokeselves at the North Pole, instead of ending up as reindeer meat Blitzen is now at the Rainybrook Petting Zoo in Columbus, Ohio. It is not expected that he will be returning to the North Pole.
Elves have already begun hunting for a replacement for Blitzen. One name that keeps popping up is that of three-time trick-flying champion Jim. However, there are some concerns that his name might not have enough mystique to be a part of Mr. Claus' sleigh-pulling team. All observers agree though that Jim's name is better than the name of the other reindeer being considered, Pamperpuff.