Wednesday is my birthday, which means it's the holiday season, which means the TV networks (and yours truly) are going into reruns, so here's a classic solstice special from my Geek Trivia days to tide you over:
Few and far between are the denizens of the industrialized world who can escape the secular trappings of the Christmas season, perhaps best exemplified by Santa Claus and his loyal team of nine enchanted (or, at least, telekinetic) reindeer: Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donner, Blitzen, and Rudolph — the latter also sporting the superpower of a hyper-illuminated red nose.
Eight of Santa’s flight-capable caribou can trace their origins to a poem: “A Visit from Saint Nicholas.” Better known by its revised title, “The Night Before Christmas,” the earliest version of this poem first appeared on Dec. 23, 1823 in New York’s Troy Sentinel newspaper. ...
Rudolph ... didn’t appear until copywriter Robert L. May dreamt him up in 1939 — and Santa’s red-nosed team leader almost received a different name.
WHAT NAMES BESIDES RUDOLPH DID WRITER ROBERT L. MAY CONSIDER FOR HIS FAMOUS RED-NOSED REINDEER?Get the complete Q&A here.