Saturday, January 12, 2008

The 2007 Word of the Year!

I'm in my Wonderful World of Weird Words mode and so is the New Oxford American Dictionary. Anyone who is a logophile is acquainted with it's mother publication, Oxford English Dictionary. It's probably the best dictionary of our language -- it not only includes definitions but has the history of the word which is really helpful for those of us who are interested in linguistics. If you visit the OED site you can, as I do, subscribe to their word of the day which is always interesting. The American edition has a blog that's interesting, too.

Each year the American edition, the New Oxford American Dictionary, selects a word of the year -- usually related to social trends and this year The New Oxford American Dictionary's 2007 Word of the Year is:

locavore: a person who uses locally grown produce largely for nutritional and ecological reasons.

The word began in San Francisco (where else?) with four women who began encouraging residents of the area to buy produce grown within a 100-mile radius or, even better, grow their own. The locavore movement has spread and more and more people are doing their produce shopping at farmer's markets or planting gardens. In some areas, they prefer 'localvore' but the meaning and concept is the same. Heck! I knew that as a kid whose parents -- and grandparents on both sides -- always planted a garden and it was fresh fruit and veggies all summer long. And and anything that could be "put up" (i.e., canned) was. Homemade strawberry preserves or grape jelly on your toast in the morning is the greatest!

Maybe I'm being picky but I'm not certain if I would consider it the word of the year because the first I heard of it was in a newsletter I get from Michael Quinion in England called World Wide Words, another interesting read if you love words.

Some of the runners-up that I like are:

colony collapse disorder: a still-unexplained phenomenon resulting in the widespread disappearance of honeybees from beehives, first observed in late 2006.

mumblecore: an independent film movement featuring low-budget production, non-professional actors, and largely improvised dialogue.

aging in place: the process of growing older while living in one’s own residence, instead of having to move to a new home or community.

If you want to see the entire list of nominees, you can look here.

Hope you find all this as interesting as I do and let me know if you're familiar with their choice as the 2007 Word of the Year! It's nagging at me that I missed it in my travels.

Happy Blogging!!!!!!!!!!!!!!



  1. Locavore is a new one for me, too, Kay, but I think I might grow to like it (so to speak). I also get all excited when the new editions are released--ain't words fun?

  2. I only know it because our newspaper did an article this past week about a woman who is a locavore. I had never heard of it before. I did remember that Edgar Cayce said we would all be healthier if we ate produce from our own area, preferably grown by us.

  3. Hi Kay,
    I hadn't heard of that list. Fun read. I consider myself a techie person, but had never heard of Cloudware and cloud servers. Interesting.

  4. Koko: lol no pun intended of course!!!!

    Judy: You're one up on me! I give myself points for admitting ignorance -- a lot of people prefer to remain that way. I've never met anyone who couldn't teach me something.

    Kacey: me neither but it's kinda cute. I get Word a Day from about over a half dozen different sources -- in both English and Spanish. I love words. How we express ourselves is so important.

  5. Excellent post! I love words. I have to get myself one of those dictionaries that tells the word's history. Most fascinating!
    thank you
    have a great day!

  6. This blog comment is esquivalient ;-)

  7. I'm with Kacey, "cloudware: online applications, such as webmail, powered by massive data storage facilities, also called “cloud servers” -- That really appealed to me.

    I subscribe to Merriam-Webster's word-of-the day. I too think words are wonderful and must say that you use them very well Kay!

  8. These are all very interesting. Just about three days ago, I heard "locovore" for the very first time..And now? Here it is again....But thanks to you, I know what it actually means now! (lol)
    I had heard the other phrases, too...! Words are fascinating...That's for sure...!
    Thanks for this Kay....Very Very interesting. I must get me that Oxford Dictionary....!

    And BTW: Do let me know when you do the MEME!

  9. Aging in place ... I love it!

    Thanks for sharing this list, Kay!

  10. Sweet stuff! I think my favorite would be mumblecore, not for the definition, but just for the phonetics of the word. I did not know about the signup over at oed, so will jump on that next. Thanks!

  11. Annie: Check used bookstores -- it's rather expensive.

    Stu: I'm laughing here. I know that word and its history.

    Annie: Thanks!!!! You're doing just fine yourself. Did the chickens laugh?

    Amy: I'm aging in place wherever I am.

    Winston: Enjoy! I get emails from about 5 or six different Word of the Day sources and I just signed up for The Urban Dictionary. There's a lot of slang out there I can't translate. lol

  12. Naomi: Glad you liked the words and yes, I will let you know when I post the meme.

  13. Locovore is a new one on me Kay. I've never run into it...even with all the crossword puzzles I do. I love words too....but it amazes me how many gazillions (if that's not a should be) of them there are out there that I don't know. Thanks Kay.

  14. A person like me who loves new words is always looking for new ways of finding new words. Thanks for the links.


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