Christmas Links #22.

Santa's real workshop: the town in China that makes the world's Christmas decorations:
"There’s red on the ceiling and red on the floor, red dripping from the window sills and red globules splattered across the walls. It looks like the artist Anish Kapoor has been let loose with his wax cannon again. But this, in fact, is what the making of Christmas looks like; this is the very heart of the real Santa’s workshop – thousands of miles from the North Pole, in the Chinese city of Yiwu."

What’s A Spanish Christmas In London Like?
"A hugely articulate and enthusiastic expert on Spanish regional cuisine, Jerusalen Gunning is a food consultant to the Boqueria restaurant group. She comes from San Sebastian, and now lives in Hampstead."

Woman transforms her office cubicle into an amazing Christmas cabin:
"Westfield works in the sales department for the W Minneapolis Hotel. With the help of her husband, Alex, she spent 18 hours creating the mini-cabin masterpiece for an office contest, according to WCCO."

A baked pancake perfect for Christmas morning:
"I'm having company stay over during Christmas weekend and that means a lot of meals to make. The only meal that sometimes can be a problem for me is breakfast. Having toast, cereal and bagels every day seems boring, but my usual company breakfast of waffles has me standing over the hot waffle iron for a long time, making waffles for everyone."

A Pictorial History of Santa Claus:
"Contrary to what many believe, Santa Claus as we know him today – sleigh riding, gift-giving, rotund and white bearded with his distinctive red suit trimmed with white fur – was not the creation of the Coca Cola Company. Although their Christmas advertising campaigns of the 1930s and 40s were key to popularising the image, Santa can be seen in his modern form decades before Coca Cola’s illustrator Haddon Sundblom got to work."

Soundtracking 'Serial': The Musicians Behind the Podcast:
"Soundcheck host John Schaefer talks with two musicians who created Serial's soundtrack. Nick Thorburn is the songwriter behind the bands Islands and The Unicorns; he was tapped to write Serial's catchy theme song. Mark Henry Phillips has a long relationship with public radio, and has provided scores for This American Life and other podcasts. Both musicians talk about the pitfalls of providing emotional cues through music; the need to create distinctive themes for the story's narrative cycles; and how to find and score the most important moments with minimal production time."

12 faces of Montreal Christmas: Bell ringer:
"It’s a sound familiar to almost every Montrealer at Christmastime. The ringing of a bell, clear and beautiful in the brisk winter air, as a volunteer stands and smiles at passersby, asking for whatever change they can spare."

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