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June O'Sullivan, LEYF CEO

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When Santa got stuck up the chimney… what did he actually say?

Half way up and unable to move, Santa shouted out that from now on he was prepared to eat his five a day, give up chocolate teacakes and large glasses of red wine, whilst joining the local bootcamp on Clapham Common.

“Ha,” said Rudolf chortling, “we have heard that before – it will take more than the fears of obesity to get him to stick to his diet. Anyway, we all know that one glass of red wine reduces the risk of strokes and dementia. No, the only answer is to get the Health and Safety brigade to ban chimneys.”

“Not on your life,” says Chris Grayling MP, “chimneys, decorations, conkers and common sense are all coming back in 2012.”

Back up the chimney, Santa has decided to trust his team led by super leader Rudolf to come up with a plan to release him.  (Leadership is apparently the modern answer for success; nowadays branded as system leadership, we just have to get it right. And with plenty of precedence for getting it wrong, those committees trying to define leadership will need lots of luck.)

Either way, Santa was always sure of a positive outcome, simply as the key holder to the stationery cupboard – a sure fire guarantee that he would be rescued, as Rudolf and the team knew what else was stored in there (and we’re not just talking treasure baskets here).

Scratching his beard, and now covered in soot, Santa contemplated what his look-alike Karl Marx would make of the current economic situation and Eurozone debacle. What would he say to those camping out at St Paul’s or to all the young people who ricochet from anger to despair?  What hope would he give that we can find a new way of doing things?  Would he mock David Cameron’s call that traditional values will save us? In an optimistic moment Marx said that

Experience praises the most happy the one who made the most people happy.”

So to be happier we need to be more equal, less acquisitive and more community minded? “Result!” thinks Santa. “My sack will be a lot lighter and I won’t have to carry so many toys.  I can dump all the PlayStations and join Pink Stinks and rail against all the pink packaged toys for girls.  Social capital here I come! I better join a Time Bank, start volunteering and get a load of apprentices into my workshop: I could become the biggest social enterprise in Lapland!”

Getting colder up the chimney, Santa decided to sing to keep himself calm and rapped out his situation, only to bring more soot on his head. “I will submit this song to Simon Cowell,” he contemplated, “and see if I can be the next winner of the X Factor. On the other hand there is always YouTube.”

So let’s all sing out with Santa:

When Santa got stuck up the chimney,
He began to shout.
You girls and boys, won’t get any toys,
If you don’t pull me out.
My beard is black, There’s soot in my sack.
My nose is tickly too.
When Santa got stuck up the chimney,
Aaachooo, achoo, achoo.

When Santa got stuck up the chimney
He began to yell
Oh hurry please it’s such a squeeze
My sack is stuck as well
Oh dear oh dear it’s cold up here
And Rudolph’s nose is blue
When Santa got stuck up the chimney
Atchoo! Atchoo! Atchoo!

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