We did catch the Scripps National Spelling Bee last night, televised from its location across town in the belly of the Grand Hyatt. Katharine Close, an eighth-grader from Spring Lake, New Jersey, vanquished Finola Mei Hwa Hackett, from Alberta, Canada. After Hackett got tripped up by Weltschmerz, Close correctly spelled Ursprache for the title. How d’ya like dem apples — eh?
For the spelling bee aficionados among you, a few more comments appear after the jump.
Actually, we don’t have much to add to the excellent write-up of our Gotham-based sibling. We did catch the Chris Connelly comment that they paraphrased, made after Hackett spelled an especially difficult word: “Finola’s middle name is Mei Hwa, which means ‘beautiful flower’ in Chinese. And she’s certainly blossoming on this stage tonight!”
The Swift Report offers this satiric take on the proceedings. But it doesn’t clearly read as satire — which is kinda scary.
Katharine Close Is Smarter Than Us All; Chris Connelly, Not So Much [Gawker]
Group Objects to Words of Foreign Origin in National Spelling Bee [Swift Report]
Prime-Time Pressure For Top Spellers [WP]
N.J. Girl Wins National Spelling Bee [NYT]