The Night Before Christmas: A Metal Detecting Fantasy

The Night Before Christmas: A Metal Detecting Fantasy


‘Twas the night before Christmas, and all thru the city,
Not a creature was stirring, except for young Betty.
With a pencil gripped tight in her wee, little fist
She labored for hours o’er her Christmas gift list.

“Oh, Santa,” she scribbled, “I’m not like the rest
Of the children you know who demand ‘Fill my chest
With dollies and bicycles, ice skates and more!’
No, Santa,” she wrote, “instead, I implore:
Leave a METAL DETECTOR when you stop by tonight!
A Tesoro! A Fisher! A Deus! A White’s!
A Minelab! A Garrett! Teknetics! E-Trac!
Please bring one or I’ll have a panic attack!”

The tot took the list, read it over with ease,
Then picked up her pen and she underlined “Please.”

Then placing the note by the chimney with care
She sighed, turned away and climbed up the stairs.
Within just ten minutes, she was snug in her bed
While visions of belt buckles danced in her head.

Santa and his reindeers riding against moon

The clock, it struck midnight, the hours, they fled
But the hearth remained silent, the child’s note unread.
Then at 2:45, as the snow softly fell
So did Santa (not softly) down the chimney, with a yell.

“Dagnabbit!” he muttered, as he brushed off his pants,
He ate all the cookies, then wiped off his hands
For Saint Nick, as we know, is a bit OCD.
He likes things just so, as we shall soon see.

Santa picked up the note and he read every word
“An unusual child!” he remarked. (No one heard.)
“A little bit pushy… but she underlined ‘Please’…
There must be a present for her amongst these!”

Santa opened his bag and he rummaged a bit.
“Now where’s that detector… Ah, yes! Here it is!
A Tesoro Cibola – a good starter machine.
She’ll learn how to listen, not just stare at a screen.
For the sounds of the objects buried deep in the ground
have their very own language and they want to be found!
The beeps and the burbles, each hum and each squawk
Will shout ‘We are here! We are here! And we talk!’

And young Betty will find them, yes, I’m sure of that.”
Then he threw in some headphones, a spade, and a sack.

Santa laid out the goodies in a beautiful pile
Then he found some more cookies and sat down for a while.
He pulled out a notepad and a fanciful quill
For a note of his own to this curious girl.

“Now, Betty!” he wrote, “you must do research!
Every map, every school, every house, every church
Has a story to tell! Find out where they stood
Only then will your digging be fruitful and good.

You must ask permission! If the answer is no,
Just smile and say thank you, then cheerfully go…
For the NEXT door you knock on could yield you a YES!
…That’s the key to the relics, the coins and the rest.

Now, Betty, my dear, I soon must depart
But I’ve some more messages I must impart.
First, fill all your holes! Leave the land as you found it.
If you find trash, remove it – there’s no way around it.
And yes, you will find it: the can slaw, the pull tabs
The Budweiser bottles, Mountain Dew bottle caps.
The wire and the hoe blades will make you cry, “Dammit!!!”
But you must remove them; you’re cleaning the planet.

And finally, Betty, you’re a most lucky girl!
For this brand-new machine opens up a new world:
Of adventure and travel, of nature and history
Lost rings, ancient coins, lead bullets and mystery.”

And with that, Old Saint Nick placed the note by the tree
Then he flew up the chimney with a “HO, HO, HO, HEEEE!!!”
But he thought for a moment, as the reindeer stood guard…

“Do you think Betty’d mind if I checked out her yard…”

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There are 3 comments for this article
  1. Harvey Pillersdorf at 7:08 pm

    Whit is a smart, strong, witty exposer of humanity. Here she’s helped detectorists connect with their passion and moved the rest of us a step closer to the dream.

  2. Gary Kemper at 5:56 am

    “Do you think Betty’d mind if I checked out her yard…” Just go ask her,it ain’t that hard. —–Have her sign a paper and fingerprint her too. Then if your caught by her sister, you know what to do—–Produce the documents and tell her she’s cute. Anything to keep you from getting the boot.

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