Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Father's Day

Father's Day was this past Sunday, and I must say that I have a great dad. He's everything one could ask for- to the point where when i was dumb enough to lock my keys in my car, in my own garage, he came with my spare keys... at one in the morning.

So, it's easy to see why I look up to my dad. Feel free to assume all the other usual stereotypes about dads, too. He is an Eagle Scout, and is the kind of guy you think knows everything...

Which is what made this past week a wake up call of sorts. We've been dealing with some financial paperwork, and it's odd to have my dad call me to sort out what it all really means. You grow up assuming your parents know everything, and as a young 20-something, continue to call your parents with questions about anything you don't know. For anything from the right oven temperature to oil changes, I treat my parents like Google Lite. It's an odd experience when you realize they do the same for you, for all the knowledge you've picked up over the years they helped support you.

But, I guess that's the whole point; you raise your family to the point where you can depend on them. Guess we, as an age cohort, are making it after all.

Thanks for reading,

Thursday, June 2, 2011

The Spelling Bee

First off, since this is a post about the National Spelling Bee, I will do my best to actually spell everything correctly.

The spelling bee might be the dorkiest event in the history of the world; these parents deserve public punishment, for things like rewarding their children for reading the dictionary. Yet, I am glued to ESPN*. There are five kids left, and they've gone two straight rounds with no one going down. One of them keeps bantering with the guy who says the word. She's actually quite funny.

On a programming note, this is infinitely better than the Little League World Series. In the LLWS, we still learn things about the kids, like their favorite foods or what they want to be when they grow up. The Spelling Bee (I've taken to capitalizing it, for no apparent reason) also gives that information, but instead of things like 'New York Yankee Third Baseman,' we get things like Physicist. Role Model: Albert Einstein. These kids are the counter-argument to the line of reasoning that claims that sports stars as role models are bad. Good news: some kids out there still just want to be smart.

While there are many ridiculous things about this entire competition, my personal favorite is the questions they ask the announcer. Use it in a sentence. Define it (that one is reasonable, as is language of origin). They stand and pronounce words from languages I've never heard of (papuan? I would have guessed that is a delicious, soft food filled with cheese).

Some girl just spelled zwischenspeil. No idea if I got that right. But that was worth the break in flow. That's impressive, considering I once spelled Bermuda incorrectly, backwards, in an intense game of Cranium.

Long story short, it's amazing that this has not yet been turned in to a drinking game by college students. One every time the kid repeats the word, after that first time. One every time the sentence used makes you laugh. Three if a kid cries if they get it wrong. One every time there is a voice crack. One every time the language of origin is something you never heard of. Everyone drinks if you can spell the word before it comes up on the screen.

Thanks for reading. Expect more this summer.

*These kids are on ESPN. I never will be. This saddens me.