Merriam-Webster’s top 10 words of 2010 have been announced, and the “winner” is … austerity. The publisher compiles the list based on the volume of searches on its website. Users may have been looking up the word to find a nicer, or maybe more accurate, way to say “tight times,” “frugality,” “budget-minded,” and so on–a reflection of their current economic state. Businesses may have looked up the word in order to help put into context decreased revenues and shrinking resources. Other words that made the list painted an equally downbeat picture of the year that was: moratorium, bigot, shellacking, dissident, and furtive. But, amid all the sorry synonyms was a word that shows there’s a light at the end of the tunnel. No. 8 on the list: ebullient.