When I was in 8th grade, I won my school's spelling bee. I had been trying to lose on purpose so I would not have to advance to the regional event, but I miscalculated the remaining turns and ended up winning nonetheless. So I found myself with a lot of unwanted studying to do. After all, I was supposed represent Saint Pat's School with pride and charisma and spelling, and I did not want to do it.
I did not study. I was about to be in deep trouble. To use a middle school spelling word, it was a predicament. Then, like a magic gift, the week before Regionals I had an emergency appendectomy and was in the hospital for a week, hence rendering me unable to attend Regionals. My classmate, runner-up William, had to go in my place. But he was always the true bellwhether, and he ended up going to Yale. So he probably belonged at that Bee anyway.
(As a strange aside, that was also the week that we all had to build catapults for science class, and my partner Jenny came to the hospital so we could test the catapult in the hallways. I think the nurses had fun with that. Physics.)
Anyway, moral of the story is that I hate to participate in Spelling Bees. Too much work, too much anxiety. But I have always enjoyed watching them. I adore the Scripps spelling bee and look forward to watching it on ESPN every year. I'm also a huge fan of the documentary Spellbound. Those kids, for the most part, have such poise; and I just don't know how they do it. I am a bundle of anxiety the whole time I watch them. Even when watching the same documentary I've already seen.
If you are like me, then perhaps you will want to get yourself to the Pilot Light tonight at 8pm. They're hosting their inaugural ADULT SPELLING BEE (!!!!!). How cool is that? I think it promises to be a very scintillating, if not slightly weird, event. Note that some words will be of a mature nature. So if you're a prude, this event might not be for you.
It's free to watch and 5 bucks to enter, but you get one free PBR with entry. And we all know how to spell PBR.