SIPS OF WINE FROM THE GRAPEVINE
HOW SANTA DOES IT
BY TONY CANDELA
DECEMBER 27, 2023
Hello to all.
My apologies for taking so long to get back to our Holiday Extravaganza. I’ve had a nasty cold and have been hiding out under the blankets.
But I’m sure we’re all dying to know, “How Santa Does It” So, here’s Tony with all the news.
How Santa Does It
By Tony Candela
For those of you who think this is a question better addressed to Mrs. Claus, get your minds out of the gutter. No. It is about how yet again, Santa managed to deliver billions and billions of gifts to all the children of the world, whether they were naughty or nice. (They are children for Pete’s sake, so we’ll cut them some slack.)
Strangely and only if you want to believe, the answer comes from quantum physics. In a 2020 article in The Irish Times, Kevin O’Sullivan reports the answer is quantum super-positioning. Santa manages to get to all of the children in all of the world by being in more than one place at the same time. “In a nutshell, quantum mechanics allows objects – including Santa, Rudolph and co – to be in many places simultaneously. That is the key ingredient, which allows for his extraordinarily efficient delivery on Christmas Eve.” As of now, physicists know that the tiniest of quantum particles, the smallest bits of matter and energy making up atoms, can be super-positioned. This has major implications for computer technology. If larger information-bits can be super-positioned, computers of the near-future will immensely dwarf present-day ones. In the meantime, only Santa seems to have mastered the art of being in more than one place at the same time. The author warns, however, that if you see Santa while on his journey, you will destroy his super-positioning and he will be only in one place at one time. Therefore, all children must be safely asleep as Santa makes his rounds!
In an interview on NPR on Sunday, December 18, Gaute Einevoll, a physicist at the Norwegian University of Life Sciences, provided a more comprehensive set of explanations. In addition to quantum super-positioning, the professor points out that Santa has the luxury of serving children all over the world, giving him 24 time zones to work with. (Traveling in the same direction as the Earth is rotating might buy him even more time.) Then there is string theory. We are used to moving in only three dimensions. But suppose there are multiple dimensions. In that case, places seemingly far apart like Montana and the Antipodes Islands or Oslo and a small town in New Zealand, both pairs located exactly on opposite sides of the Earth from each other, can end up right next to each other. Thus, although it might seem like Santa must travel at the speed of light, string theory provides a way for Santa to deal with normal space more quickly than we 3-dimensional mortals can.
What about the immense weight of all those gifts? Our professor posits that Santa has toy-manufacturing sites and storage places outside of the North Pole, such as the International Space Station and some asteroids. Gifts can be delivered to Santa’s sleigh by drones as he flies by.
As for knowing who has been naughty and nice, all those wool caps kids wear in the winter send brain signals to Santa’s large antennas, some lodged in Rudolph’s and the other reindeer’s antlers. Those quantum super-computers mentioned earlier sort out the data for Santa who, in the spirit of Christmas, is prone to be generous.
Where does Santa really live? The professor says Norway, noting that the people of Finland who also claim ownership, are not happy with this answer. He admonishes, ‘Watch out for Santa wannabes.’
Of course, there are always those who try to game the system. Some naughty people might lure Santa with speakers blaring out the song “Santa Baby!” Business-minded children will incentivize Santa with milk and cookies. And finally, there are always Santa agnostics who go out and buy their children a few gifts just in case!
Whatever you believe and whether you have been naughty or nice, I hope yours was a very Merry Christmas!
Anthony R. Candela, Author
Saying aloud what should not remain silent.
Books by Tony…
Stand Up Or Sit Out: Memories and Musings Of a Blind Wrestler, Runner, and All-around Regular Guy
A memoir about life lessons learned, especially through sports
Vision Dreams: A Parable
A sci-fi novella about how a dysfunctional society forces people to go to extremes, including four blind people who seek out artificial vision.
More About Tony…
Tony Candela has worked as a Rehabilitation Counselor, supervisor, manager consultant and administrator for more than 40 years in the field of blindness and visual impairment. His work has included promoting literacy and employment of blind persons and a special interest in enhancing the career preparation of blind persons who wish to work in the computer science field. He is a “retired” athlete, loves movies, sports, reading, writing, and music, including dabbling in guitar.