Tuesday, May 31, 2011

THE WRITTEN ROUND:  Because it was done live before all competitors simultaneously this year, as opposed to rotating them through a computer-administered test, it's already over. Only the last ten words might have proven difficult:

  • JIH guh dee: unsteady or jerky; a suboptimal way of getting with it.
  • IHN fo bahn: a series of tubes.
  • KAL uhn chuhr, KAL uhn cher:  "a fever formerly supposed to affect sailors in the tropics causing them to imagine the sea a green field and to leap into it."
  • buh NO bo, BAH nuh bo:  an ape.
  • pih nee uhl EK tuh mee:  when you get your pih NEE uhl gland out.
  • KOFF kuh ehsk:  I actually used this word in a brief two weeks ago. "Nightmarishly complex and illogical," like that dude KOFF kuh's stories.
  • muh NAH duh mus:  inhabiting a single dwelling while singing this catchy song.
  • vih teh LEN, vih teh LEEN, vih teh LIHN:  yolky.
  • ass uh TAIR ee uhs:  used in salads
  • HOO KEE LAU: Of or pertaining to a restaurant-slash-dinner theater in Chicopee, Mass.; a rambunctious Hawaiian fishing party.
Answers on the big board, so the spellers already know heading into tomorrow's two oral rounds just what shape they're in, and whether it's time to start scanning Thursday's IMAX schedules ...


  1. Eric J.10:42 AM

    Better KOFF kuh story: thuh KA suhl or met uh MAWR fuh sis?

  2. I thought this written round looked easier than in other years. I also think it's very exciting that this year's bee is wide open in terms of fewer repeaters and top finishers returning. We could see the emergence of a bunch of new spelling bee stars in an open field. Also, who is excited about the spelling bee returning to ESPN? My interest was certainly revived.

  3. BeeFan12:47 PM

    I hope I don't have to eat my words, but ...

    The move back to ESPN has to be positive for real fans.  Probably for the spellers too.  The Bee will be presented and run as a serious competitive event, not like a reality show kiddie style.

    Hmmm, Nupur?  Are you the Nupur who won the Bee back in 1999?

  4. pfrduke1:12 PM

    Wait just a minute - "youthquake" (#6 on the big board) is a word??

  5. Nupur1:22 PM

    You summarized my thoughts exactly. Indeed I am. :) Hence my excitement about the return to ESPN. I hadn't followed it too closely for the last few years but Bee Fever has struck again for some reason.

  6. Genevieve1:30 PM

    I didn't think "jiggety" was a real word, but then was reminded of "Home again, home again, jiggety jig."

  7. Folks can scan through last year's posts to see all the problems we had with it -- between cutting off the last Thursday round in the middle and the excessive commercial breaks and profile pieces during the prime time rounds.

    FWIW, the "cap of 50" for Thursday still seems too low, unless folks believe that the written round + Weds rounds do an adequate job of reducing the field in a fair way.

  8. David3:13 PM

    Damn, looks like ESPN is going to do the cutesy half-sphere chair crap that ABC did. They've already been filming it, apparently:


  9. Nupur6:39 PM

    It's surprising to me as well that they kept the cap so low for reaching round 4. Given that so few spellers will be on television, I wish they had just stuck to the classic ESPN format of spelling from round 5 until the end in the afternoon. The flow and suspense would be uninterrupted and the championship finalists would be less exhausted and nervous from waiting extra hours. Alas, time for the awkward and trite half-sphere chair filler interviews take precedence over what would have been a great return to form for spellers and audiences alike. Sadly, I'm willing to bet that those kids felt even more awkward doing those interviews than we did watching them.

  10. Meghan8:51 PM

    At my summer camp, one of the camp sites where we'd go rough it for a night was called the Hukilau.  They always told us it was Hawaiian for "mosquito heaven."  While that might not technically be true, the Hukilau was, most decidedly, a mosquito heaven.