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“On a Scale of 1 to X” refers to the common saying “On a scale of 1 to 10”. Most of the time, people use this to gauge someone’s response to something, with 10 being the highest, most extreme, and 1 being the lowest, and least extreme. Often, people have made references as to exceeding the scale, for instance, responding with “11” on a scale of 1 to 10 means that it is unbearably or unimaginably extreme (Hence going beyond the limit). It is impossible to know the first occurance of someone substituting 10 for X, whether humorous or not, so the beginning of this meme is unknown. Although, it has been seen commonly occuring since 2009.
X has often found its place when the relating question also parallels what the scale is for. A good example, for instance, is “On a scale of 1 to Barbra Streisand, how easy is it to find your place”? A bad example would be, “On a scale of 1 to Computer, what time is it?”. Sometimes, the scale has central qualities. On a scale of 1 to Dead, someone could be injured. On generic scales, the scale usually goes 1, Orange, Potato, X. Orange has often been replaced with Blue, but if used on the same scale it could also be 1, Blue, Orange, Potato, X.
Some notable examples are:
On a scale of 1 to Chris Brown, how angry are you?
On a scale of 1 to David Hasselhoff, how Hammered are you?
On a scale of 1 to Clocks, how many bones does Ice Cream have?
On a scale of 1 to Full Retard, how are you feeling?
On a scale of 1 to Obese, how American are you?
On a scale of 1 to Magic, how much My Little Pony do you watch?
On a scale of 1 to Pool-Filled-With-$1000-Bills, how much is this house going to cost me?
On a scale of 1 to Fat, you’re pretty much your mother.
On a scale of 1 to Bad, stabbing someone over a D&D ruling is pretty bad.
On a scale of 1 to Existing, Santa’s 1.
On a scale of 1 to Michael Bay, how big was the explosion?
Other times, the question is given with an answer. For instance, on youtube, instead of posting “Did he died?”, posting, “On a scale of 1 to fatal, that’s probably fatal.” gives the same message.
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