“Nut job” is having a moment.
Dictionary lookups for the term on Merriam-Webster’s website spiked 173,750% Friday after The New York Times reported President Trump used it to describe James Comey, the recently fired director of the FBI.
According to the Times, Trump told Russian officials in the Oval Office this month that Comey was “crazy, a real nut job,” and that firing him relieved “great pressure.” The president’s decision to terminate Comey at a time when the bureau is investigating possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russian operatives was widely criticized, and the Justice Department appointed a special counsel in response.
As Merriam-Webster notes, “nut job” (or “nutjob”) refers to “a mentally unbalanced person; a crazy person.” The etymology is pretty straightforward: It’s derived from the word “nut” (“a crazy person”) combined with the word “job.”
The rest of MW’s top five trending terms on Friday were also Trump-related: “collusion,” “counsel,” “witch hunt” (a phrase he used to describe the Russia probe), and “surety” (a word he used while complaining about his treatment by the media during a speech at the Coast Guard Academy).