With the holidays now upon us, it's really hitting home how much I miss our former neighbour, Troy. Like most decent community members, he was always quick with a smile and a wave; he kept his property in good order; his kids were never too loud past midnight. Troy was pretty quiet, too - he even switched off his Harley at the top of our street, silently coasting past our homes and into his garage like he was on a giant chromed mouse.
Our new neighbours are great folks, too - really sweet people - but they can never quite make me smile the way Troy inadvertently did every Christmas season. He usually opted for a tasteful wreath, a couple of colourful floods, some cut-out paper snowflakes on his windows; nothing too showy or... deliberately obscene. But the final three, hilarious years he lived across the street from us, he set up an inflatable lawn display featuring a Santa character methodically rising and lowering inside his chimney in a glacially-paced game of peek-a-boo with a Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer figure facing him. This hardly merited a second glance, unless, given the right meteorological conditions, this slo-mo pas de deux got animated in ways far more enchanting than its designers ever could have imagined.
When weather turned sour and the breezes kicked up, it became a family tradition for us to gather around our front window, cradling hot cocoas, blankets on our laps and Bing Crosby on the stereo, and watch Troy's display metamorphose before our eyes. As divine good luck would have it, Troy's air-filled icons were aligned to the prevailing nor'westers that sometimes came barreling down our street. These gave Rudolph almighty slaps on his back, folding him forward. Each time Santa emerged from his huge bricked sheath, the flailing reindeer would crumple straight into Santa's waiting arms and groin. With just the right gusts this pneumatic love fest would then commence bucking rhythmically, transforming this innocent commingling into a raunchy tussle.
With the dutiful indifference of a porn star, the smiling red-nosed playmate would plunge down on his master, hammering at his waistline briefly, teasingly, before Santa waggled back down his chimney lest an unseen Mrs. Claus should catch them in flagrante delicto. On a good day the wind and their stamina would last well into the evening, sending us off to bed with visions of things far different than sugar plums dancing in our heads, as we tried to fall asleep while laughing out loud.
Not an actual recording of Troy's lawn. Animated for your perverse pleasure with Adobe Photoshop & Premiere
Each morning we'd wake to the same sight – deflated fabric lay scattered across Troy's yard, barely hinting at the sexual bacchanalia that sizzled on this snowy lawn the night before. Collapsed across the privet as if sleeping off a bender, the jolly old elf's frozen grin and Rudolph's tumescent schnoz suggested both were in a state of perpetual arousal, eagerly dreaming of the next chance to consummate their elicit paring.
Troy may never know what happened each time he plugged in that little puttering compressor of his, but we thank our lucky stars it filled his streetfront porn stars with the Spirit of Christmas Perversion.