I’m reminded of my mother’s favorite word, which is “spiral”. When I asked her why that particular word, she answered it was the image of the word that sparked her attention. The word described what it is, and she liked the way it sounds. To better illustrate, as she said the word spiral, she drew a flowing, curling ribbon in the air.
That got me to thinking, what is my favorite word? Actually, two words pop to mind—the first one is “brilliant”. This word brings up memories of when I was about 11 years old and my cousin John from Scotland came to visit us. He would say “brilliant” as an adjective, which I had never heard used that way before. I only knew brilliant to describe light’s intensity. It was amazing to me to hear it used as a synonym for excellent, awesome or terrific. When I think of this word, I can still hear his Scottish brogue.
My other favorite word is a Spanish word lástima. This word takes me back to when I worked for a subcontractor and was speaking Spanish every day. Translated to English, lástima has two meanings—1. a shame or tragedy and 2. an injury. This always puzzled me, so I asked one of the superintendents about it. He replied matter-of-factly, “Well, it’s a shame if you get hurt!” By that logical statement, I never forgot the translation.
Isn’t it amazing how the term favorite can be defined differently—a favorite word can be melodious the second you hear it. Or, as you hear the syllables, it conjures up memories.