Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Words About Words

As a publisher, I am fascinated by words and ideas. Along this line, you may be familiar with Merriam-Webster's annual declaration of the top ten most looked-up words from their on line dictionary. Understandably, many view this list as an indicator, a barometer if you will, telling what's been on our collective minds most recently. For 2005 in descending order, the top ten words were: integrity, refugee, contempt, filibuster, insipid, tsunami, pandemic, conclave, levee and inept. No doubt the whys and wherefores for what prompted these words over others has been the source of personal reflection, Sunday sermons, kitchen table conversations and high school essays.

Wouldn't it be wonderful to see the 2006 list topped with words like peace, prosperity, hope, rebound and cure? But the new year isn't so new anymore. At this point my top ten list looks something like: resolution, goal, treadmill, jogging, carbohydrate, elastic, excess, and possibly hangover, promises and change. I am counting on this list improving, as we get closer to summer.

What about you? What words do you think will make the top ten most looked-up list for 2006, and why?