Jalopy And Other Trending Words On Dictionary.com


Our biggest word this week was . . . drumroll please . . . jalopy. Huh?

Well, it seems like the New York Post article “Consumers prefer software updates over buying new phones,” may have had something to do with the searches for this word. That’s because searches increased 3229% on the day the article was released compared to the average number of searches per day for this word. The word appears in the first line of the article “Fix up that old jalopy or add some new features instead of going to the considerable expense of buying a new car.” Thanks for expanding our vocabulary (even if it is a word that means “an old, decrepit, or unpretentious automobile“), New York Post!Want to learn more about Essential Car-Sales Lingo To Know On The Lot? Read this!


Oh, there’s a lot of speculation going on this week, for sure. Searchers were curious about this word, 327% more curious to be exact. The curiosity may be due to all of the speculation (or “contemplation or consideration about a subject”) about more sexual-harassment reports (as well as about resignations due to those reports . . .) and also about Bitcoin.

Many classified Bitcoin as a “speculative venture,” so it seems the definition below is probably what most people were looking for when searching for the word in relation to this bit of news: “engagement in business transactions involving considerable risk but offering the chance of large gains, especially trading in commodities, stocks, etc., in the hope of profit from changes in the market price.”


And, now we see the softer, romantic side of the general public. Mistletoe increased 216% in searches compared to the average day.

In the same holiday vein, searches for reindeer increased 139% and searches for wreatincreased 203%. ‘Tis the season. 


Searches for the word evergreen may have increased 129% this week for several reasons:

  1. Evergreen State College in Olympia, Washington has been experiencing racial tension amongst its students and professors. With some professors resigning earlier this year, issues continue to arise as a another professor resigned this month.
  2. Evergreen trees have that holiday look and may be on people’s mind as holiday season is upon us. And, unfortunately a sad news story in the Philadelphia area developed as an evergreen tree that was planted by a young child who passed away was stolen. Shame!
  3. Or, maybe, people were just curious about the everlasting nature of evergreen. One of it’s definitions is “retaining its relevance, popularity, usefulness, etc.; enduring.”


Another wintertime favorite, snowflake made our trending list this week, with an increase in searches of 248%.

Or, maybe, it was our Snowflake video that really got people curious. Check it out!


WarNuclear war, the war on Christmas, war via social media, war with North Korea, the South Sudan War, Trump declaring war in the Middle East . . . this is not a peaceful time, unfortunately. And, sadly, this is a topic on a lot of people’s minds as searches for the word increased by 461% this week. Can’t we all just get along?Want to learn more about some famous calls to action (or peaceful protests)? Read our article outlining the most famous ones.


Meaning “bad, wrongful, or ill,” mal– is a combining form (a word that attaches to other words to give them the negative meaning). Searches for this word increased 257% this week, maybe due to the med-mal law suits that have taken over the news (in this case, mal is short for malpractice).


Karamu? Well, this word also has a festive background. Karamu is the culminating feast of the Kwanzaa holiday (taking place on December 31st).

And, it is also apparently a small New Zealand tree . . . .


Well, Scientific American may have had something to do with the spike in searches for this word. It released an article entitled “How Trump Shaped Science in 2017.” In this article, they state “The Trump administration has taken what many see as a largely apathetic—and at times actively hostile—approach to science.” Yikes. We hope Trump’s second year as president leads to more scientific advancements and less of them fighting words.Want to see some of President Trump’s other controversial words that he’s used this year? Check out our list of Trump’s favorite words.  

Net neutrality

Net neutrality has been a big topic this month, and it was on people’s minds this week apparently as searches increased by 935%! Well, the FCC just killed it. So, what does that mean for the rest of us? Learn more about net neutrality here.

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