Well, I'm home now. I had one of those nonstop kind of crazy, busy days. I also have a fairly wicked cold, which I don't understand because colds are for the winter. You don't get colds in the SUMMER! Worst of all, I missed the National Spelling Bee.
I LOVE THE BEE.
It's true. Bee season is the best. I love checking in with the National Spelling Bee web site and watching all the little videos of the finalists in D.C. They get to do all kinds of fun Bee stuff. The bus of all the kids heading to the family picnic is hilarious. It is an interesting collection of kids. My favorite part is when they freak out because they get to meet Jacques Bailly. He is the guy you see on tv telling them the words to spell. He is the spelling world ROCK STAR. He himself is a National Bee winner — back in 1980. He has been reading the words and answer the question, "Language of origin, please" since 2003. He has a fantastic sense of humor.
I don't spell well. I never really have. I hate spelling and don't think it is essential as a subject in school. But I love the Bee.
I'm really great a solving word searches. It is a weird gift. You hand me a word search and once my eyes focus in on the puzzle, the words start to pop out at me. I can solve them fairly quickly. I also can solve jigsaw puzzles pretty quickly. My dad and I always did jigsaw puzzles together. We are quick and efficient team. I used to have a secret dream that he and I would join the competitive puzzle solving circuit and clean up. Father/Daughter Puzzle Team Solves Them All!
I think I like the Bee because it is a celebration of a weird skill. They don't have competitive word search games, at least as far as I know, and despite my dreams otherwise, there is no competitive jigsaw puzzle circuit. At least we can let the spellers have their show.
The Husband always knows when it is Bee season because I greet him with this improbably sentence: "We have to watch ESPN tonight!" I love that the Bee is on ESPN. He knows me well, and will sigh and say, "It's the spelling thing again, isn't it?"
By the way if you have never seen the documentary, Spellbound, you really should watch it. It follows a few kids on their way to the Big Bee, and it is far more entertaining than you would expect.
This year's winner correctly spelled the word MAROCAIN. It was won by a 6th grader from California who first correctly spelled the word: GIFBLAAR and then MAROCAIN for the win. I try not to get too attached to any single speller in the Bee - that way I'm not crushed when they get eliminated. A crowd pleaser this year was a 6 year old named Edith. She made it all the way through three rounds before being eliminated. She was one round away from the finals. She's in kindergarten. She managed the loss pretty well, after all she's got NINE more years that she's eligible to compete.
The only thing I can spell right now is sleep, so I'm going to do that.
Keep moving forward,
P.S. When I spell checked this entry - it marked BOTH of those spelling birds as incorrect. Figures.