Friday, May 29, 2009

Aaj Kal Ke Bacche...

Following news talks about an Indian-American girl winning 2009 spelling bee contest

In her fourth appearance at the annual spelling marathon, a supremely-confident Kavya Shivashankar, 13, of Olathe, Kansas, breezed through to win the 82nd Scripps National Spelling Bee competition, after going toe-to-to with her pre-school friend Aishwarya Pastapur, 13, of Chatham, Illinois and Tim Ruitter of Centreville, Virginia.

Rediff article about 2009 spelling bee results

Hindu article about 2009 spelling bee finals

13 year old girl in a spelling contest with words ( menhir,maecenas,laodicean,apodyterium,amarevole,fackeltanz ) which on first encounter appear less likely to be found in dictionary and more probably in medical journals....what is this world coming to :-) I mean will the remake of the movie Gentlemen_Prefer_Blondes have the song "Diamonds are a girl's best friend" altered to "Dictionary is the girl's best friend" :-)


Some trivia about the competition copied from its official website

spelling bee official site

1. This year we welcome 293 spellers— the greatest number in the history of the event.
2. Bee Week 2009 marks the first visit to the nation’s capital for 118 spellers.
3. Speller 139, Sidharth Chand, of Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, placed second in the 2008 national finals.
4. The spellers range in age from 9 to 15 years old, but two-thirds are either 13 or 14 years old.
5. Speller 110, Kavya Shivashankar, of Olathe, Kansas, is a three-time top 10 finisher.
6. The pronouncer, Dr. Jacques A. Bailly, is fluent in French and German, and he teaches ancient Greek and Latin.
7. Speller 250, Gabriela Diaz, of Corpus Christi, Texas, practices spelling while jumping on her trampoline.
8. English is not the first language of 33 spellers, and 117 spellers speak languages other than English.
9. The spellers' favorite words include Weissnichtwo and humuhumunukunukuapuaa.

favourite word humuhumunukunukuapuaa ...??????????
Are you sure that is a word and not just some randomly ordered juxtaposition of letters h,u,m,n,k,a,p??? :-)

Interestingly wiki ( humuhumunukunukuapuaa or Reef triggerfish ) says this about the name of this fish
"It is often asserted that the Hawaiian name is one of the longest words in the Hawaiian Language and that "the name is longer than the fish.""

I am sure that even a fanatic fish fan will have serious hang-ups before ordering this in a restaurant...
("Sir, we have all the varieties in fish from Sea fish to fresh water fishes. What would you like to order?"..
"hold on a second"
brings out the dictionary...rehearses saying humuhumunukunukuapua╩╗a a couple of times...and , after clearing his throat, gingerly asks,
"How about humuhumunukunukuapua╩╗a curry?"
"I am sorry Sir, but we don't breed new species of fishes christening them with unpronounceable names."
"Oh! in that case how about Rohu curry?"
" That will be fine,Sir") :-)

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