My favorite word

I share this article from the Post-Gazette for one reason only: It includes what I’ve long said is my favorite word…

Council honors owner of Steelers bar in Italy
Tuesday, November 16, 2010
By Joe Smydo, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

The owner of a bar in Italy was named honorary “ambassador plenipotentiary of the Steeler Nation” this morning by Pittsburgh City Council.

Giovanni Poggi, owner of La Botticella in Rome, said he gave the bar a Steelers theme about five years ago because Pennsylvania students were frequent patrons.

Today, the establishment is well known as a “home away from home” for Pittsburghers, Mr. Poggi, on his annual visit to Pittsburgh, said.

The bar shows Steelers games when the time difference allows and has a black-and gold, Pittsburgh decor, including university memorabilia, he said.

Mr. Poggi said he now travels to Pittsburgh once a year to visit friends. He always attends a Steelers game but has not once seen the team win.

The proclamation honoring Mr. Poggi boasts that the “Steeler Nation is mighty and vast.” Rome is one “outpost,” it said, thanking Mr. Poggi for welcoming fans “with libations that maintain the traditions of Pittsburgh hospitality in a venue decorated with Myron Cope’s mighty, mysterious and all-powerful Terrible Towel,” or as it’s known at La Botticella, the “Asciugamano Terrible.”

“I have to say, I have met a lot of great people. Grazie,” Mr. Poggi said.

Did you guess what it is?

It’s a noun, and as I just learned, an adjective.

Merriam-Webster online tells me it from circa 1656 (none of those new words for me).

It has 7 syllables. 7!

Yep, it’s “plenipotentiary: a person and especially a diplomatic agent invested with full power to transact business.

Don’t ask me why, but I have always loved that word. And loved saying it. But of course, have never been able to say it in the context of anything other than “What’s your favorite word?” conversations.

You have those conversations, too, don’t you?

Anyway, my day is complete. So what’s your favorite word?

May you have warm words on a cold evening,
a full moon on a dark night,
and a smooth road all the way to your door.
~ Irish Blessing


  1. robbie said,

    Wednesday, November 17, 2010 at 1:34 pm

    I LOVE onomatopoeia.

  2. WritingbyEar said,

    Thursday, November 18, 2010 at 10:17 am

    Good one, Robbie! I still remember when I first learned that word: in 9th grade English with my favorite teacher (that I had a big crush on). But I still can’t spell it without looking it up!

  3. robbie said,

    Monday, November 22, 2010 at 1:10 pm

    Over the weekend we uttered across another favorite, unmissable. The English use it more than Americans which is too bad because it can be, the perfect word!

  4. WritingbyEar said,

    Monday, November 22, 2010 at 1:49 pm

    Not familiar with that one, Robbie…does it mean “not to be missed” (as in, it’s spectacular) or “you can’t miss it” (as in, it’s obvious)?

  5. robbie said,

    Tuesday, November 23, 2010 at 10:13 am

    I’ve only used/seen/heard it in the first context, it’s spectacular – not to be missed. Like the annual gift exchange is unmissable!

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