17. March 2007 · Comments Off on AARGH · Categories: Ain't That America?, Fun and Games, Home Front

Red Haired Girl competed in the regional Scripps Spelling Bee this week – a victory there would have taken her to Washington for the national competition. She’s a very good speller, but these things tend to be luck-of-the-draw (I never heard of a cruller, or for that matter, a muumuu). She did well until the second from the last (p-e-n-u-l-t-i-m-a-t-e) round when she got the word fuselage. When asked to repeat the word, the pronouncer – consistent with her performance the entire evening – gave it a somewhat British flavor. RHG, who reads a lot but not the things that boys read, spelled it the way it was pronounced that night – fusilage. Another girl was eliminated for spelling angst as ongst, and yet another for spelling chronology as chrinology – in both cases they spelled it as it was pronounced to them.

I have always considered my time in the USAF in the early seventies to be a defining point in my life, and have an on-going fascination with airplanes, so this particular defeat was somewhat crushing. RHG took it in stride though, looking forward to next year. On the way home we went through some words that she might encounter in the future, like empennage.

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