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Language problems: Saints and sinners

Bienvenido Macario brings me up to date about "Your comment in the reply to Darren Fraser on the posting about St. Patrick's Day (myth and all). I would like to caution you about the use of Santa Claus' Ho! Ho! Ho!. In today's slang Ho is the other slang for "whore" or prostitute.

By the way, Santa Ana, Santa Lucia, Santa Maria, and all other female saints have the title "Santa". Whereas Santa Claus is a male saint yet he has the "Santa" title. How did this come about?"

My reply: 1) Sinners: Santa Claus, not I, says "Ho! Ho! Ho", so pass the warning on to him. 2) Saints: A garbled form of Saint Nicholas, At the Bolivar House Christmas Party last year Kathleen Morrison was such an excellent Santa Claus that I told he the form "Santa" was appropriate.

Ronald Hilton - 3/16/02