What’s the deal with this Elf on the Shelf thing? I’ve been alive for more than 33 years and have celebrated more than 33 Christmases, but up until last year I had never heard of this Elf on the Shelf. I didn’t have any friends who did anything with the Elf on the Shelf. That includes friends in Utah and New York.
I’m not sure when this trend started, but it seems to be popping up everywhere. I see it on Facebook. I see it in newspapers. I see it in commercials. My own sister, for the first time, started the Elf on the Shelf thing with her kids this year. She has a teenager who hadn’t heard of it before either.
I’m sure Addie would love it. A magical elf hiding out in the house pretending to watch all the comings and goings of the family seems to be something that would be right up her alley. Vivi probably wouldn’t care much about the Elf on the Shelf. She’d only be interested in how far she can be thrown across the room. Someday Vivi may become a fan, but in the end it won’t matter because the Elf and the Shelf is not invited in my house and here’s why: the Elf on the Shelf creeps me out.
Casey has a thing for mirrors. When we first moved in, she went out and bought a few wood-framed mirrors that could be hung on the walls throughout our house. She has a long mirror that she uses to do her hair. She has a mirror on a vanity that she uses to put on makeup. All of these mirrors have one thing in common. They’re all faced upwards and out of my direct line of sight. Why? Because mirrors freak me out.
When I was in elementary school I had a friend who convinced me that Bloody Mary was a real thing. He convinced me that if I stood in the dark in front of a mirror and chanted her name three times she’d make an appearance. He also said that if I stood outside a darkened room and taunted her she’d fight to get out of the mirror. One day my friend had us stand outside the bathroom door at school as he chanted her name. He then began to taunt her. Without any of us noticing what he was doing, he began scratching at the metal grate that was located halfway down the door. To us, it sounded like Bloody Mary was trying to fight her way out of the mirror.
Later that day a teacher rounded up all of us who had listened to my friend do his Bloody Mary thing (turns out my sister was the hall monitor who turned us into the teacher). The teacher took us in the bathroom and turned off the light. At the instruction of the teacher, for 15 solid minutes we stood in the dark and chanted Bloody Mary at the mirror. She never came out, but the event kind of traumatized me forever. Mirrors will never be the same.
You know what gets a similar reaction from me? Dolls. My grandma used to have this clown doll that she set up on her bed and it had big eyes and it was always watching. Nobody had to tell me anything about that doll to make me think it was constantly watching me, but I swear my fear stemmed from the whole bloody Mary experience. So the Elf on the Shelf, which would be a doll that moves around the house and watches everything I’m doing, really creeps me out.
If my kids ever resent me because I didn’t do the Elf on the Shelf, I’m going to blame that elementary teacher who traumatized me for life.
Photo Credit: Flickr
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