Saturday, 6 December 2008

Graduate as Santa Claus

All the latest posts had a serious undertone. That’s not quite what "Brazil in Hot Pants" is all about, as it promised to involve a wink to the sometimes lofty Brazilian society with a hint of its beauties.
Hence this post about Papai Noël, as Santa Claus is called here. What have these “dirty old men” to do with Brazilian beauties? Well, Brazil should not be Brazil if Papai Noël did not have assistants, called Noeletes. Is Papai Noël required to be old and fat with a barreled belly, from the Noeletes is expected, that they are 18 years and ........ of course.
Scroll down and see for yourself.

As in several places in Brazil, Tijuca (Rio de Janeiro) is organizing a course that leads to qualified Santa Clauses. In four weeks time, the student is taught how to behave as Santa Claus.

"Ho ho ho, happy Christmas!" is the battle cry, which leaves, during this time of the year, almost certainly a beatific smile on the innocent faces of all children. But the words should sound well and a proper imitation of the famous smile of Santa Claus requires preparation. The course instructs candidates how to become 'the good old man’, to be able to work during the Christmas season in shopping malls and other areas.

The actor Silvio Ribeiro, 59 years, is responsible for one of the courses. In addition to the training for Papai Noël (Santa Claus), Mamãe Noël (Christmas mother) and of course Noeletes (assistants), he also recruits for the casting agency Claus Artistic Productions, which has 60 vacancies this year.

But it is not that simple to become a Santa Claus. There is a number of requirements. "First, he must like children. If the candidate has no patience with children, then he has no chance. He should not be chubby, but quite fat with a protruded belly, as well as lively and communicative (looks like he must be an old dirty male pseudo-pedophile). According to Ribeiro, children talk with Santa Claus as if they were old acquaintances.

During the course, the candidate Santa Claus receives tips how to tackle and circumvent idiotic questions from curious toddlers. The most difficult part of being a good Santa Claus is the hours and hours sitting in a chair, showing a slight smile, taking punches and pushes, a finger in the eye, in the mouth, pulling the beard, etc, etc, etc ... without showing any stress. Because Brazilian children are, as everywhere in the world, bloody nuisances.
Who succeeds and gets his diploma can win a temporary job. Employers offer a salary and expenses. For Papai Noël BRR 900 (USD 400), Mamâe Noël gets BRR 700 (USD 310, difference should exist) and a Noelete goes home with BRR 600 (USD 266), but for both Papai Noël and a Noelete this can rise to about BRR 3,000 (a good USD 1,330). For Mamãe Noel (logically) there is less interest.
The requirements for a Mamãe Noël are identical to Papai, so she should be chubby and lively. For a Noelete it is a bit different, she has to be at least 18 years, attractive and friendly. Many students transform into a Noelete during this month.

It is no surprise that the children are interested in Papai Noel and the fathers thereof prefer to ogle the Noeletes.

My favorite Noelete remains Sabina Sato.

No comments: