Toddler Uses Sign Language to Escape Shopping Mall Santa Claus

Toddler Uses Sign Language to Signal Help from Santa Clause
Get me out of here!Kerry Spencer

Help! This little boy used sign language in a desperate bid to escape Santa's grip.

He wanted nothing to do with Santa Claus.

A photo of a little Maryland boy in the clutches of St. Nick has gone viral because of what the tyke is doing with his hands.

"We taught our baby sign language. This is the sign for 'help,''' his mother, Kerry Spencer wrote on a Twitter post that has been retweeted more than 6,000 times and "loved" 26,000 times.

Her son, Samuel, was captured sitting on Santa's throne looking none too pleased. 

"Samuel never really warmed up to Santa," his mom told Monday. "Both of my kids think Santa is a bit dodgy, actually."

Samuel was 1 when the hysterical photo was taken. He's 13 now.

Spencer said she posts the image to Facebook annually. This year, at the suggestion of a friend, she tweeted it, expecting "maybe 20 people to see it. And, well."

Samuel and his 11-year-old sister, Lily, both remain leery of Santa.

"Santa is so sketch," the mom quoted her daughter as saying. "He stalks you. He kisses your mother. And don't even get me started about what happened to grandma."

Some viewers of the photo pointed out that Samuel's signing of "help" wasn't technically correct.

"Samuel is slightly 'mispronouncing' help," Spencer said. "He was 1! Strictly speaking, his thumb should be pointed up, not sideways. But anyone who has taught a baby sign language knows they don't sign perfectly. As with spoken language, they will get some things a little wrong."

Samuel is not hearing impaired, she said. She and her husband taught him sign language as a baby to better communicate with him.