Junior League "elves" wrap gifts for a cause

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Elves have creeped me out since 1996, when a seatmate on a trans-Pacific flight told me about Mexican elves who masquerade as adorable, saucer-eyed children. They implore you to come with them so they can show you something important. "Then you're never heard from again," she said gravely. She believed in elves, and her conviction made me believe, too. I arrived home safe and sound. Eventually I relinquished my sweaty grip on my hiking staff and kitchen knife (elf-slaying tools) and fell asleep after 53 hours of jet-lagged wakefulness. But the fear of elf abduction remained, especially on rural drives through sylvan Louisiana, when it's neither night nor early morning, but that misty, gray hour in between.

So press releases like this one strike a dissonant chord:

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However, those who are less elf-phobic might want to consider this good cause: For $5, Junior League "elves" will wrap a gift, and all proceeds benefit the Junior League of New Orleans (JLNO). They'll be wrapping at The Shops at Canal Place from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. now through Saturday, Dec. 24. As to whether the workers will be dressed as elves, Holly Payne of the JLNO says, "I think they might have Christmas hats on."

The sinister elf in its natural habitat
  • The sinister elf in its natural habitat

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