With Christmas around the corner, and all of the little children wishing and writing to Santa about the video game they want, or the pony they'll wish they never wished for in a few years, I decided that it was time for me to roll out with The Unfunny Truth About Santa Claus thread. NOTE: If you believe in Santa, I would stop reading here. It has to be done: No known species of reindeer can fly However, there are 300,000 species of living organisms yet to be classified, and while most of these are insects and bugs, it does not rule out the theory of flying reindeer. There are an estimated 2 billion children in the world. But since santa doesn't apparently handle muslim, hindu, jewish and buddhist children, that reduces the workload to 15% of the total, a mere 378 million. At an average rate of 3.5 children per family, that's 91.8 million homes. One presumes there's at least one good child in each house. Santa has 31 hours of Christmas to work with, thanks to the different time zones and the rotation of the earth, assuming he travels east to west, which seems logical. This works out to 822.6 visits per second this is to say that for each Christian household with good children, Santa has 1/1000th of a second to park, hop out of the sleigh, jump down the chimney, fill the stockings, distribute the remaining presents under the tree, eat whatever food is left for him, get back up the chimney, get into the sleigh, and move to the next house. Assuming that these 91,800,000 stops are evenly distributed around the earth (which we know is not true), we are now talking about .76 miles per household, a total trip of 75,500,000 miles, not counting stops to do what most of us must do at least once every 31 hours. This means that Santa's sled is moving at 650 miles per second, 3000 times faster than the speed of sound. For purposes of comparison, the fastest man made vehicle, The Ulysses Space Probe, moves at a poky 27.4 miles per second. A conventional reindeer can run, tops, 15 miles per hour. The payload on the sleigh adds another interesting element. Assuming that each child gets nothing more than a medium-sized Lego set (2 pounds), the sleigh is carrying 321,300 tons, not counting Santa, who is invariably described as overweight. On land, conventional reindeer can carry, at most, 300 pounds. Even granting the ability of 'flying reindeer' to pull perhaps ten times the normal amount, we cannot do the job with eight or even nine. We need more. Actually, we need 214,191 more reindeer, or a total of 214,200 reindeer. This increases the payload, not counting the weight of the sleigh, to 353,420 tons. Which is 4 times the load of the liner the Queen Elizabeth. 353,000 tons traveling at 650 miles per second creates enormous air resistance, which will heat the reindeer up in the same fashion as a spacecraft re-entering the Earth's atmosphere. The lead reindeer will be subjected to 14,300,000,000,000,000,000 joules of energy. Per second. Each. In shot, they will almost instantaneously burst into flames, exposing the reindeer behind them, who will repeat the process, and they will also create deafening sonic booms in their wake. The entire reindeer team will be vaporized within 4.26 thousandths of a second Santa, meanwhile, will be subjected to acceleration forces 17,500.06 times greater than gravity. A 250-pound Santa (which seems ludicrously slim) would be pinned to the back of his sleigh by 4,315,015 pounds of force. In conclusion, if Santa ever did deliver presents on Christmas, he's dead now.