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Word of the Week: Pivot


You may have received an email recently (or perhaps 400 emails) encouraging you to pivot. And you may have thought, “Bit rude.” But that wouldn’t have been the intention. While ‘pivot’ may mean the same thing as ‘swivel’ in engineering terms, its use in vernacular English is quite different.


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Word of the Week: Repetition

So, having advised you all to spend your weeks of isolation sitting under a tree, I’ve discovered that I crave the occasional change of scene. Fortunately, the scene is changing day by day, as buds burst and petals drop, but I can feel a creeping sense of repetition with which I’m not entirely comfortable. When are these flipping blue skies going to end?

Oh, there they go. (more…)

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Word of the Week: Furlough

Every crisis throws up a new buzzword. Remember ‘prorogue’? Seems so long ago now, doesn’t it? The Falklands War gave us ‘yomp’. Liverpool winning the League gave us… no, it’s gone. And now COVID-19 has given us ‘furlough’.

Many people have found themselves ‘furloughed’ in the last couple of weeks, raising a number of questions about the use of this antiquated word. “Will it mean a pay cut?”, “How long will it last?” and “Why isn’t it pronounced ‘fluff’?” (more…)

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Word of the Week: Panic

a pan

Today is Friday 13th. As if we haven’t got enough to worry about. In fact, we’ve got a pandemic to panic about – a pandemic that’s causing pandemonium. A pandemic that’s causing pandemonium in Pangbourne.

You’ll have noticed that all these words begin with ‘pan’ and you’ve probably guessed what’s coming next: they’re all related, right? (more…)

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Word of the Week: Wet

otter word of the week

It’s hard to say this when there are otters swimming down your street and your living room’s knee deep in sewage but we ought to be grateful for the rain. It’s a wet planet we live on – 71% of its surface is covered in water (probably more like 72% at the moment) – and that is what makes it our home.

We are wet. More than 50% of the human body is water and if we don’t drink the stuff for three days we die. Simple as that. We wouldn’t last long on Mars.

The reason I’m telling you all this stuff you probably already know is because of the word dishevelled. I’ll explain. (more…)

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Word of the Week: Form

form word of the week

Apologies if you’re still recovering from filling in your Tax Return and have had it up to here with forms, but this won’t tax you, there are no cookies to approve and, as an incentive, I’ve thrown in an interesting fact about cheap worktops that you might want to share in the pub this evening. I’m not here to bother you with questions. Well, apart from these two…


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