If you're seeking a dash of awkward to sprinkle over your holiday, look no further. You might want to watch this pretty weird video of the Trumps wishing kids a Merry Christmas on the phone via NORAD, the North American Aerospace Defense Command. NBC News shared the peculiar video video on Twitter on Sunday, eliciting remarks from social media users about the slightly strange nature of the clip.
At first, it seems like Trump is just posing for the press pool as their professional cameras click off. But then you can hear the president say, "Good. Good. OK. Hi, Casper. You're from Virginia, right? So, what do you think Santa is gonna bring you?" Little Casper from Virginia apparently tells Trump that he wants building blocks this Christmas because he loves to build things. "Oh, building blocks, that's what I always liked, too. I predict that Santa will bring you building blocks, so many you can't use them all," the president responded.
Perhaps the reason why the video seems a little off is because, well, the body language between both the president and the First Lady doesn't seem Christmas-y. The First Lady can be seen sitting with her body in the complete opposite direction of her husband as she speaks in low tones on the phone. Trump's voice, however, seems to echo.
Carrying the conversation on with the child, Trump then asked about where he thinks Santa Claus was. Casper apparently reckoned that the Santa Claus was in Arizona. "Well, you're close. You know where he is? Cameroon. You know where Cameroon is? Your mom will tell ya," Trump says.
The tradition of tracking Santa Claus during the holiday season reportedly began in 1955 in Colorado Springs, Colorado. The story of just how the tracking began is rather endearing and sweet. According to a report in NPR, the NORAD Santa operation started thanks to a little typo in a local newspaper in Colorado Springs wherein an advertisement for Sears accidentally misprinted its own number.
According to the report, the printed commercial was supposedly from Santa Claus and said, "Call me on my private phone and I will talk to you personally any time day or night, or come in and visit me at Sears Toyland." The misprinted number ended up sending kids' calls to Col. Harry Shoup's private contact at the Continental Air Defense Command. Since then, the tradition of hitting a few numbers up and seeing where the jolly old man is took off, including previous presidents answering kids about Santa's location.
Following the tradition of trying to find where Santa is, the Trumps reportedly took a total of 15 calls from curious children. On social media, observers shared their impressions of the event and from the look of it, it seems like most people gave the president and his wife a thumbs down. One Twitter user said, "[Trump] doesn’t seem interested or cares." Another person suggested, "If he calls you, kids, just tell him he's Fake News."
Social media users recalled different statements from Trump and gave their own versions of what to expect from the NORAD calls. One Twitter pondered, "President Trump & Melania helped take
#NORAD calls today. Did Donald tell the kids Santa would do better on a Trump plane?" Some Twitter users predicted what Trump would say.
"Some kid is going to call into NORAD and Trump is going to tell them about his electorate win," a Twitter user mused. The jokes went on. But perhaps the most biting humor came from one person who tweeted, "Not to scare the little kiddies, but [White House] schedule says that Trump and Melania will be participating in NORAD Santa Tracker phone calls at 4PM today." Then the Twitter user joked Trump would tell the children that he wanted "Clinton in cuffs, FBI disbanded, [and] CNN gone" for Christmas.