Legions of Santas are currently perched in malls all over the country, waiting for your children to climb atop their laps and whisper to them their most secret desires. The Mall Santa thing has to be one of the creepiest traditions we have, and yet it seems like it will never die -- and as a result, a lot of people out there in internetland have embarrassing pictures of themselves as kids posed with Santa, and sites like sketchysantas are there to redistribute the most humiliating of those memories for the rest of us to enjoy.

This first creepy Santa is a vintage found photograph owned by collector Albert Tanquero, who has an amazing array of vernacular/found photos on his Flickr page. It's easily the scariest picture of Santa I've ever seen, if not one of the creepiest photos I've ever come across, right down to the taxidermied donkey.

The following Santas were found in the voluminous archives of sketchysantas:

Santa should at least try and look like he's having fun, right?

Santa's about to have a complete mental breakdown. He's got the crazy-eye, as they say.

How can she be so calm with this leering maniac's arm around her?

Note to Santas everywhere: masks are scary. If you look so unlike Santa Claus that you must make use of a mask to sustain the illusion, you might consider another line of work.


Santa looks like death warmed over.

I think Santa and his lap-dweller might be the same age. So much gone horribly awry here ...

Santa's got a Percodan addiction.

80s glasses look weird on Santa. Also, Santa looks a little like Mark Borchardt from American Movie (then again, maybe it's just the 80s glasses).

Merry Christmas, people!