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What Does "Hot to Trot" Mean?

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  • Written By: H.S. Anderson
  • Edited By: A. Joseph
  • Last Modified Date: 24 October 2014
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"Hot to trot" is an idiomatic expression that has two similar meanings with very different connotations. In one sense, a person who is "hot to trot" is ready for action and eager to start. In a second, lewder sense, a person described this way is eager to initiate, or highly covetous of, lascivious activity.

The term was first popularized during the 1950s. The exact etymology of the idiom is unknown, one theory is that it has its origins in horsemanship. The word "trot" tends to conjure up imagery of a horse that’s eager to start trotting toward its destination. Thus, the theory that the phrase originated from someone who worked with horses might be credible.

"Hot to trot" is a phrase that is best used among friends and relatives, because insight into someone’s background is often necessary to grasp the intent behind the usage. For example, the statement, “She's really hot to trot to get to work” could imply that there’s someone at work whom she is eager to see, or it could mean that she is looking forward to starting a new project. In this case, only someone with personal knowledge about the speaker or the woman in question would understand the exact meaning. Caution should be exercised in using this phrase, because some people might easily misinterpret the intent behind it might even construe it to be sexual harassment if it is used in the workplace, for example.

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Popular culture references to this phrase are common. A film with this name depicts a talking horse with a gift for picking stocks. The idiom has a double meaning in this title because the main character is eager to obtain money as well as to win over a girl. The hit song "Too Hot Ta Trot" by The Commodores uses a variation of the phrase with strong sexual connotations.

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