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Greg.Ca

Why do some cars drive off when Santa approaching them??

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My teen age boys dress up like Santa on the weekends and wear a Santa hat on the weekdays and hand out candy canes to the viewers of our show. For the most part 80-90% of the viewers open up their car windows to talk with us. We always ask them if they want a candy cane. Over the past 3 years or so, we have given out thousands of candy canes to our viewers. We have never asked for or accepted any money.

However, it intrigues us as some viewers race off in their cars as if we are trying to harm them?? It hurts our feelings that someone would not want to talk to 'Santa' and receive a candy cane. Can't really figure this out.

Any psychologists out there who might have some thoughts on why some cars race off when approached by Santa?? Thoughts??

--Greg--

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I think some people may think they're peeping or staring. So they feel like there's going to be a confrontation when other people approach.

Maybe they hate Christmas and are just looking at the display to get themselves worked up and don't want to offend you by telling you they hate Christmas.;)

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ive noticed some cars come to my show and will sit at the driveway edge (cannot even see the whole show there).. but the car is out of view of the house windows there..

I think some people do not understand that the reason the lights are there is for people to stop and enjoy them.. they feel like it is a provate home and they wouldnt want someone sitting in front of their house staring at the house.. it is a mentality almost like the lights arent there....

ive noticed more than once when I notice something has gone ot or needs straightened if I go out and there are cars there sometimes one or more will drive away the minute I come outside..

and then there are those that put the windows down while they listen and if they see me give a thumbs up or "great show" or "is it hard to do that?"

I had one guy the other night(I was fixing after the wind storm) get out and was totally interested in how everything works and fascinated that the music is programmed manually and not automatic...

-Christopher

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Ha! We've experienced this same, strange thing. When we go out to hand out candy canes, we'll get maybe 1 car in 20 that doesn't want to roll their window down. Sometimes they just pretend you're not even there! :121_reindeer:

I dunno, maybe they think we're trying to sell them something. ;)

Most people enthusiastically greet us. Heck there was one guy outside of his car the other night applauding us as we drove off to get dinner. There was a small bus two nights ago from a retirement home, they sent the driver in to bring us a couple dozen sugar cookies!

If you average it out, people are great. There's always some kooks in the crowd.

Edited by Gary Martin

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My friends do the same thing... lol I get an e-mail the next day saying they stopped over. Well heck knock on the door or something.

They've come to watch the show and stay warm in their cars and leave. I think you have it right that we do it for others but they feel like they are peeping.

I open the door and cars scatter. I wouldn't take it personally.

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Some displays approach cars as Santa and ask for donations. This ruins it for the rest who are just trying to be nice...

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Some displays approach cars as Santa and ask for donations. This ruins it for the rest who are just trying to be nice...

wow i havent encountered that yet... ive seen boxes set out where you can donate food or money if you like but have never been approached.. one reason i rarely go to church is the offering plate... if I want to give i'll give.. if I dont i dont...

I might drive off from a display like that too

-Christopher

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one reason i rarely go to church is the offering plate... if I want to give i'll give.. if I dont i dont...

There's nothing wrong with simply passing the plate by. We tend to give a larger amount once a month or so, instead of every week. Our church also has an online giving option which many people use. So there are plenty of "givers" who pass the plate by in a given week, so there is no stigma for doing so...

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However, it intrigues us as some viewers race off in their cars as if we are trying to harm them?? It hurts our feelings that someone would not want to talk to 'Santa' and receive a candy cane. Can't really figure this out.

Tell him to leave the axe in the garage.;)

Last week I was under one of the mega trees fixing a flakey connection. The tree was "off" for the part of the sequence that was running. During this time a car pulled up and stopped to watch the show. As soon as the mega came on, they apparently saw me because the car took off like it was a dragster!:giggle:

It gets even "weirder". The simple act of looking out the window to check on the display will cause folks to bolt. Granted, I'll never be on any magazine covers, but I ain't Freddie Kreuger!

My best guess at this psychological oddity is people: 1. Don't want to be "caught" watching (a voyeuristic streak?); these are the same ones that drive off in mid-show when another car comes along. 2. Somehow feel their "space" is being violated.

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I can almost guarantee they think you are asking for money. Last year a guy threw a 5 in the bowl before I could ask if they wanted a candy cane. :D You can try putting some red/white lights around the bowl or something to make it look more festive. I actually started just walking out without a bowl and them in my pocket which helped, but we normally have a few cars at a time. Even them, still had a few drive off now and them.

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I am glad I am not the only one.

This being my first year, I was not prepared for the peoples reactions.

I have had three people get out of there car and talk, which is great! I love to answer questions and show them the miles of cable on the ground etc... I have had several cars roll down the window and shout something like "great job" or "thanks for doing this". But 9 out 10 cars litterly scatter when I walk out my front door. It is so odd to me. I get calls or emails the next day of people saying they stopped by but didnt stay long because they didnt want me to thing they where stalkers. I always reply with "After my friends and I spent 4 months putting lights on my house, programming, configuring, tweaking, etc. all for 30 days of a huge animated light show, dont you think I wanted people to stop and enjoy?"

The reply emails always say "I didnt really think of it that way" and then the following sentence is always " YOU SPENT 4 MONTHS PUTTING YOUR LIGHTS UP?!!?!!":giggle:

Nexy year my voiceovers will tell people they are invited to "PARK" and enjoy the show.

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I may add something to the voiceovers too about staying to watch and enjoy it.. and to pull all the way up to allow anyone behind to see too...

people that sit at the edge of the driveway miss all of the lights on the roof.. and at points in the show those are the main attraction..

-Christopher

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"It gets even "weirder". The simple act of looking out the window to check on the display will cause folks to bolt. Granted, I'll never be on any magazine covers, but I ain't Freddie Kreuger!"

I get this too when I look out the window. So I keep most of my blinds or shades pulled down almost all the way. That way i can be a peeping tom and look at the visitors without them seeing me:p

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"It gets even "weirder". The simple act of looking out the window to check on the display will cause folks to bolt. Granted, I'll never be on any magazine covers, but I ain't Freddie Kreuger!"

I get this too when I look out the window. So I keep most of my blinds or shades pulled down almost all the way. That way i can be a peeping tom and look at the visitors without them seeing me:p

This is where security cameras are VERY helpful. I can spy on the visitors, and they have no idea ;)

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Yeah. I have a security camera on my front porch and the monitor is my TV in the living room, so I turn the input on my tv to the camera during commercials and I can see the cars coming and going.

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Greg,

Having been to your display (last year) ... and had you come up in the Santa outfit with the candy canes ... I will say that my wife was a bit hesitant for a moment ... but I reassured her that I knew you (sorta) and this was a very cool thing happening. My kids absolutely loved it !! It happens far too infrequently these days. So please don't let these things discourage you in the future.

I think its really just a matter of society and how open we are (or are NOT) to strangers, even if the stranger is Santa. This is especially bad in the larger cities, IMHO.

I recall the days when if you looked over at someone in a car next to you (say at a stoplight) that it was probably because you were just being FRIENDLY. But of course, these days, many people think your either: strange, mad/angry at them, selling something, begging for something, or someone dangerous.

So I think the cool thing is that people can see that ... when they go to your show, the show is free, the gift is free ... and the friendliness is real and unsolicited. Some will run for various reasons, but some that are on the fence will see that there are still good people (like yourself and your sons) that give unconditionally and ask for nothing in return.

There is a popular song out right now that I like ... and in the lyrics, its says that "heaven gave the first time" ... an unsolicited gift. :)

It's a great song: Downhere - Gift Carol How many Kings: Songs for Christmas

"How many Kings" is probably their better known song, also good, with truly meaningful lyrics.

Edited by taybrynn

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I do have the few that do run off when see me pop outside if I've been inside. However - I am trying to spend most evenings outside with a fire pit which actually seems to help bring people up to watch and talk!

I've been keeping a VERY careful eye on my display the past few days - as I've apparantly hit the "cool" factor for high-school age kids.

One very nice thing that I've noticed with my website - it that it shows how people are clicking to the site. It also scares me that a variety of the linked facebook profiles are from a local high-school.

Of course..... some of the videos I've recorded on the camera's of groups of people dancing in the street is absolutly hillarious

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this is my first year with LOR and I cant stop either looking out the window or walking out to see people that are here and hand out some candy canes. i tell my wife every night, I walked out and they took off, again! Its so funny.

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I was going to get a santa suit and go out to see people but I can't find one that goes with my camo painted semi-auto rifle. :eek:

I prefer the 12 guage....... there's two rounds of buckshot, then come two slugs... lol

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I prefer the 12 guage....... there's two rounds of buckshot, then come two slugs... lol

nah dont use a 12 gauge too wide of a pattern.. will damage the lights...

-Christopher

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This is where security cameras are VERY helpful. I can spy on the visitors, and they have no idea ;)

We do this as well, we call it our spectator camera! It is connected to the TV in my office and The kids check it periodically and love it. every time a car stops and they see it, they run through the house yelling "spectator". It has now become a neighborhood joke.

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It hurts our feelings that someone would not want to talk to 'Santa' and receive a candy cane. Can't really figure this out.

This should not really hurt your feelings. Some people don't want to roll down their windows for various reasons. They may be an anti-santa fundamentalist Christian or have some other reason. Maybe it just makes them nervous talking to a stranger.

If they don't want to talk to you, fine, just move on to somebody else who does.

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