Several players wrote, however, to note that the local variable, l_text, is declared as VARCHAR2(20). So this assignment:
the_text := 'Santa is coming (for some, sort of, maybe)';will raise a VALUE_ERROR exception. In other words, they chose the correct answer, but for the wrong reasons.
It is true that if statement assignment was executed, VALUE_ERROR would be raised and the text "Today is the 24th" would be displayed on the screen.
But that statement is never executed because of the lack of an ELSE clause.
I did not intend to introduce this issue into the quiz; the original quiz submitted by Michael used just "Santa is coming". But I "softened" the text - after all, many do not celebrate, do not believe in Santa, etc. - and neglected to increase the size of the string.
I will correct this in the question text. There will be no re-scoring of quiz answers.
Merry Christmas to those who celebrate,