Meet Caga Tió: the Traditional Log That ‘Poops’ Presents for Children

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We are mere days away from Christmas and excitement is at an all-time high. We love pretty much everything about the holiday — the hot cocoa, the twinkling lights, the popcorn garlands, and the pooping logs.

Yes, you read that right. We’re talking about logs that poop!

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People hang socks on their mantle and then eat candy out of them on Christmas morning. You probably don’t think that’s weird. But it kinda is.

It’s a dead plant that you cover with lights and baubles and keep in your living room. Why? Because it’s tradition!

Mistletoe! Another dead plant you keep in your house. This one is specifically for kissing purposes.  

However, we recently learned about a Catalan Christmas tradition that does have to do with pooping. And we kind of love it.

The Tió de Nadal goes by another name, though. And that name is Caga Tió — literally, “sh*tting log.” Here’s how it works.  

Caga Tió is an adorable little fella with a happy face and a jaunty red hat. He’s almost adorable enough to distract you from the fact that he’s there for one reason and one reason only — to poop.

What does a pooping log eat, you ask? Well, he’s not too picky. He’ll take your orange peels, dry bread, or whatever leftovers you’ve got for him. Just don’t forget to feed him. If you do, he might not poop! It’s traditional to cover the log with a blanket. You know, to keep him cozy.  

There are several different songs about Caga Tió. These are the lyrics to one of them: Caga tió! caga torró avellanes i mató, si no cagues bé et daré un cop de bastó. Caga tió!” In English, that translates to: Sh*t, log! Sh*t nougats hazelnuts and mató cheese if you don’t sh*t well, I’ll hit you with a stick. Sh*t, log!

Here’s another video where you can hear the song a little better (warning: it will get stuck in your head):

Caga Tió/brave pooping log that he is/doesn’t even let the smile fade from his face/His job is not yet done/He must now poop. (The songs are very clear about the expectations everyone has for Caga Tió.)

And no matter what’s in those boxes, you always get exactly what you want for Christmas — as long as what you wanted was to see a log poop presents. Interestingly enough, Caga Tió isn’t the only poop-related Christmas decoration in Catalan. (Fair warning: these next images may be slightly NSFW.)

Traditionally, el Caganer is depicted as a peasant with his pants down and a little poop on the ground beneath him.  

El Caganer is another traditional Catalan Christmas decoration. He’s actually been part of nativity scenes across Catalonia since the late 17th or early 18th century. People usually hide one in their own nativity scenes and invite friends to find it.

Caganers can be found in the shape of politicians, athletes, and celebrities. Not even fictional characters are excluded.

You know, we had never actually wondered what R2-D2’s poop looked like. But now we know! We’ll never look at a bolt quite the same way again.

The big guy in red is always watching, and you don’t want to end up on his Naughty list. By the way, have you ever considered how weird it is for an old guy to sneak into your house through your chimney to leave presents? Yep. Pretty much all holiday traditions are a little wacky.