LONG BEACH - Most Peninsula residents have seen them, many have got quite a chuckle out of them, but almost everyone is still left wondering - what is the story behind the "MISSING" Santa Claus and Frosty posters? Tacked up at busy areas around the Peninsula, the posters were put up after Long Beach residents Don and Tina McGuire woke up Dec. 6 to find that two of their outdoor Christmas decorations were gone.
"We decorated our house with a lot of stuff," says Tina, who resides on 25th Street. "We went out of town and came home on Dec. 5 and we woke up the next morning to find a note."
The missing decorations, a toddler-sized bright red plastic Santa and a white plastic snowman, were screwed down to the McGuire's front door railing, along with a variety of other bright and festive decorations. In place of the two cheery figures, was a note that read:
Mr. and Mrs. Light Show,
We are writing this letter to inform you that we are on strike. As per the code in the handbook of the Fraternal Order of Yule and Lawn Statues, FOOYALS for short, it states that being mythological creatures we are allowed to call for any unscheduled leave of absence without notice, due to the fact that we work 24/7 for a minimum of two weeks straight while being tied down to our jobs. We love the smiling faces as they gaze upon our splendor, but as of late, we have been feeling a bit antsy.
Therefore, we have called in for our unscheduled break, Frosty and myself are the only two leaving from your splendid display for a small time. The other lawn creatures refused to leave the display for fear of reprimand. I personally believe the limelight bestowed upon them nightly by the adoring fans enamors them to staying. The show offs!
Now per the code in the FOOYALS handbook, we must stay in contact "with the bringers of good tidings," which is you, so you will hear from us while we are away. As to exactly how often, we are not sure. That is left up to our discretion. We will be out and about town here, since we could not talk the reindeer into a short vacation. So we would ask that if you see us, do not draw attention to us, we will be in disguises so that we may enjoy your fair town unmolested.
Good tidings Mr. and Mrs. McGuire and we shall see you shortly.
Santa and Frosty
Slightly confused, but in good spirits, the McGuires had a laugh while they tried to figure out who might be behind the comical prank.
"It's got to be someone who knows us, but we don't know who," says Tina, who owns the Corral Drive-In with her husband. "At first we thought it was planned by one of our employees, but when we had our company Christmas party over in Astoria, another letter had shown up while we were gone! Someone has a heck of a sense of humor and we're getting a kick out of it, but we just don't know who it is!"
Over the past two weeks, the McGuires have received numerous letters, Polaroid pictures and gifts from the traveling twosome. Though the letters and photos are usually found at their home or their business, the McGuires were surprised to receive one of the letters from a local police officer.
Discreetly sightseeing, Santa and Frosty have written the McGuires about their great tales and their attempts at living like locals. With tips from the McGuire's garden angels, the two say they have visited Long Beach's Thai restaurant, the El Compadre Mexican Restaurant (Santa reported that Frosty had to recover in the establishment's freezer to overcome the spicy food), and even strolled through Marsh's Free Museum to check out our most popular oddities.
We loved the frying pan downtown. I need to see who made that thing because it would be perfect for us at the North Pole for dinnertime. Now Marsh's Museum scared me. That Jake thing, wow, is it ugly! I think that he might be a long lost relative of my wife's family. Don't tell her I said that, though.
Intrigued by our coastal culture, Frosty and Santa also made their way to Ilwaco, where they spooked themselves at the Coast Guard bunkers and made a quick stop at the port - though Frosty didn't attempt to look at any boats close-up, for fear of falling off the docks and vanishing.
On their third day of vacation, the traveling twosome reported that their disguises were starting to raise eyebrows during their shopping trips, though they were able to escape "before a mob broke out."
Then the yuletide duo sent left a letter describing their recent fishing fiasco. With trout poles and some jarred oysters, the two attempted to fish for a few hours, until a good Samaritan informed them that they would need a sturgeon pole, as well as a license to fish. Not being legal citizens of our state nor country, Santa and Frosty ended their fishing trip.
After that fiasco, we pulled out the ole clam guns. Interesting contraptions, I must say. We proceeded to stomp around the beach (okay, so Santa stomped and I watched since I would lose myself with every stomp), looking for these mushroom-shaped holes. I didn't know that holes would come in shapes on the beach, but I guess you learn something new every day. We didn't see any mushrooms, but we did see a lot of volcano-looking mounds with holes on the top. Once of them even spit at Santa, getting him in the eye. What a tantrum he threw! You should have seen him. It was extremely funny. Mrs. Claus would have laughed until she cried.
After a confrontation from the police for clamming illegally, Frosty and Santa told the McGuires that they have given up on seafood.
Meanwhile, the McGuires were quickly putting together "Missing person" fliers, in case the two were indeed unkindly stolen from their home. Before long, they received a new note - Santa became worried that the missing signs were posted by Mrs. Claus, which could get him into trouble, seeing as he is having fun without her.
Since then, the two pals have been spotted all over town, but say they found a great hiding spot in a Long Beach resident's lawn-ornamented yard.
Though locals have spotted the two ornaments in transport, no one has been able to identify the creative individual behind this amusing stunt. As for the McGuires, they are happy to hear Santa and Frosty are still around, but hope that they are returned soon.
"If you happen to see them, let them continue on with their vacation so that they can come back from vacation sooner," says Tina, who has wrote letters and left packages in return. "I'm truly sorry for infringing on their unscheduled vacation by placing the posters. I hope they're having a good time and that they return before Christmas."