Janice Hall Heck

Finding hope in a chaotic world…

#AtoZ, 2014: X is for X. Is it Better to Be Safe or Sorry?

atoz [2014] - BANNER - 910

X is a jack-of-all-trades.  It can be an abbreviation, a noun, a verb, or the first letter of some adjectives.

Xing, pronounced crossing,  is a commonly used abbreviation to alert pedestrians about where to cross the street safely at busy intersections.ped xing

But I do think this next fellow has clearly taken advantage of the intended purpose of the pedestrian crossing sign.

Granny and Little Red Riding Hood safely cross the street with a very hungry Mr. Wolf.

Granny and Little Red Riding Hood safely cross the street with a very cunning and ravenous Mr. Wolf.

Other functions of X

X (eks) can be a noun (a letter or symbol)

X marks the spot on a treasure map; the place to dig to find buried treasure
Put an X in the box to indicate your choice for President.

X (eks) can be a verb. verb forms: x’s (plural), x-ed  (past tense)  x-ing (present participle)

X out all those extra adjectives and adverbs!
The editor is x-ing out all my favorite bits of dialogue.

Bob, the typesetting boy for the Alexander-the-Great-o-nopolis Gazette, in Edgar Allan Poe’s story, “X-ing a Paragrab,” had fun x-ing out all the o’s in editor John Smith’s editorial. PoeCalendar.com reviews that story here: “Txld yxu sx. yxu knxw.” This story is definitely good for a laugh!

X can be on adjective: words that start with xanth, xen, xer, and xyl

xanth-yellow. xanthous, xantric
xen- foreign. xenophobic, fear of foreigners or strangers
xer-dry. Xeroxing is a dry copying process, not a wet chemical bath process.
xyl-to do with wood.  Xylophagous bees are wood-boring bees.

You can find more X adjectives here: Grammar.YourDictionary.com


Your Turn: What do you think? Should Granny and Little Red cross the street with Mr. Wolf?

Janice Hall Heck, retired educator, blogger, and nitpicky editor of On the Horizon, a bi-monthly community newsletter for Horizons at Woods Landing, Mays Landing, NJ, is quite possibly a grammar geek.

logo 2.2Oh Heck! Another Writing Quirk,  theme for the amazing 2014 A to Z Challenge, suggests ways to improve our writing by avoiding and/or eliminating troublesome bug-a-boos that cramp our writing style.

Look for a list of posts for the #AtoZ, 2014 Challenge (Writing Quirks) here:  #AtoZ: Q is for Quirky Index and a Q Post Round-Up

Meow for now.  =<^ !^>=

cat x ing




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One thought on “#AtoZ, 2014: X is for X. Is it Better to Be Safe or Sorry?

  1. Once again, I have to say it’s an Americanism. In the UK, the use of ‘X’ as in xing for example would only really occur in text (sms). It’s not something we would ever see on a traffic sign.

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