Is your holiday season missing a certain spark? Maybe the magical sound of children’s terrified screams is what you need, a spice that only Krampus can provide this time of year. I’ve been campaigning for a while now to bring the Austrian holiday of Krampusnacht to U.S. shores. For those unfamiliar: Krampus, a fiendish character from pre-Germanic lore, plays “bad cop” to Santa Claus’s “good cop,” but in an especially nightmarish way. He drags misbehaving children out of their beds, stuffs them in a sack, carries them back to his cave, and eats them.
Upholding the finest nihilistic tradition of the Brothers Grimm, Krampus doesn’t mess around, in action or appearance. We’re not talking a sleek, candy-ass Disney villain here: The annual Krampus parades in Europe’s Alpine countries are festivals of oneupsmanship where makeup and costume designers compete to make the creature as freakin’ scary as he can be. Krampus-related P.T.S.D. has got to be a severely underdiagnosed condition in Austrian adults.
My recommendation for a very Fort Worth Krampusnacht: Capture the Lake Worth Goat Man and pay him a seasonal stipend to loiter around Sundance Square with a “naughty” list and a big sack. If that doesn’t work, we’ll go with Plan B: Hire an off-duty Fort Worth cop to wear a Krampus mask. Shoppers will only suspect he’s FWPD if they smell the liquor on his breath.