He’s got billions of people and gifts for them to keep track of, so naturally he’s got a stupendous card index filing system to back it up! Usually Santa’s “List” gets the hero’s credit for his operation along with elves, reindeer, and a sleigh, but let’s be honest: he’s got a massive filing system that he uses to compile that naughty and nice list!
I appreciate that the movie The Christmas Chronicles (Netflix, 2018) features Santa’s main office in an extended sequence and shows off the backbone of his office operation. With centuries in operation and millions of moving parts, he’s obviously solved the logistics problem the way many before him have. His filing system seems to consist of alphabetically ordered names and letter correspondence he maintains with his juvenal suppliants. This system along with magic (presumably) allows him to make his famous list.
Throughout the movie Santa demonstrates his encyclopedic knowledge of people, their names, and long histories of what they’ve wanted for Christmas. Surely it was long and concerted work with his filing system which has made his work almost second nature, right?!?
The boxes pictured are definitely not standard library card catalog 3 x 5 inch size but are closer to a more classical 4 x 6 inch, or if you presume he’s using the DIN standard, which may be more likely, then A6 slips. If the shelves are roughly as deep as my own filing cabinet, then this room could easily contain roughly 13,925,000 slips. In comparison to Niklas Luhmann’s lifetime output of notes, this would represent roughly 155 Niklas Luhmanns—it’s no wonder that we call him Saint Niklas.
4 thoughts on “Santa’s Magnificent Zettelkasten: The Christmas Chronicles”
St. Niklas (Luhmann)