I wanted to create an abbreviation for “exclamation point”. It is far too long of a phrase to be useful in spoken word. The written form only requires two movements of your pen-laden hand so why must it be such a clunky thing to say? In my quest to create a proper short-mouth version (the verbal form of short-hand — see, I’m making up words already!) I discovered that one already exists: “excl”. This discovery actually irritated me, partly because someone had sought to solve this problem before me, partly because it is an ugly thing to say, and mostly because it looks too much like Microsoft Excel. It’s supposed to be pronounced /eks’kl/ or, for those of us who were never properly taught how to read pronunciation notes, “ex-cla”, which makes perfect sense. Why didn’t I think of that!?
On to my next quest: to find a way to use hand gestures to represent the excl. A la “air quotes”… Please enjoy the following.