Secret Santa!!

BE EXCITED! It is the fifth year of the GREAT Twitter Secret Santa of New Zealand! Started by @websam in 2010 for his friends and tweep friends, and since 2012 it got too big for his breeches (sorry @websam!)

Registrations open on 13th November! so mark your diaries!

Now New Zealand Post has been doing it for two years and it is getting bigger and bigger! There is a Secret Santa Warehouse so you don’t have to give your address out to strangers, if you got a rotten egg Santa then the present for them goes to charity. All in all, it is a slick process which I had much fun taking part in last year.

This post isn’t about the logistics, I’m sure you can read or tweet all about it. I would like to share about my experience last year and my thoughts on Secret Santas in general.

Social media is a funny beast, it’s not really been around that long but it has really embedded itself into most world societies. There are regional differences but generally Facebook and Twitter seems to be the most popular at the moment. (cue fans of ALL the other networks! Comment below if you must!)

The NZ Secret Santa is a twitter thing. This basically means you have to have twitter to take part. There has been debate about people “just joining to do the secret santa”, complaints that it is hard to buy for a person who never tweets, or is a protected account. I think these complaints miss the point of a Secret Santa, and I freely admit that I thought that way too last year! My person had retweeted two things ever, one to do with some English football team and one to do with Dr Who. Obviously this was the world’s least subtle hint, so I picked one and dutifully sent off my gift. I definitely admit I felt a bit “ripped off” I wanted to get into it, twitter stalk and maybe even strike them in conversation sneakily, I obviously couldn’t do this with a non-user.

I’ve thought a bit more about it since then, and I spent time thinking about what a Secret Santa is about. I grew up as an immigrant from a non Western society to Aotearoa. My childhood didn’t have Christmas memories of trees and turkeys and all thing clichéd from popular media. We always had presents, but it was clear they were loving presents from mom and dad. We’ve since continued this with our children, believing that any belief in any mythical creatures is a lie.

This, I believe, is why I enthusiastically get into any and all secret Santas! The mystery and anticipation makes the present so much better! The fact that a stranger (or a workmate etc) took time to think about what you would like makes it just a nice thing!

So if you have twitter, come join us! The New Zealand twitter community is nice and who knows, even if you don’t have twitter, get into it. You have a whole month to learn!

Bookmark and register, don’t be a grinch!