Wednesday, November 12, 2008

What Nerds Do in Williamsburg


Monday night, it was nerd city. Nerds, glorious nerds, of all race, creed and colour. I made Isaac accompany me to the Williamsburg spelling bee, which I've been wanting to go to since forever. I've never been in a bee before but I think I'm pretty good at spelling. Guess what? I am NOT ("NOT, N-O-T, NOT").

It's a kind and gentle bee, so you get three strikes before you're out. My first word was "acclimatization," at which point I was outed as a Canadian because I said, "zed." Then, I swung and missed on "corrodible," ("I-b-l-e" - REALLY?!) and "dissuasion," (how could I have only said one "s"?). Very annoying, because on paper they look like words you should be able to spell. The next word I got right was way too simple ("sclerosis") and then my final strike was on "salicetum." Oh, the shame!

In fact, it was totally nerve-wracking and I could hardly have a sip of my shandy. I can't remember the last time I was so nervous! Striking out gets the pressure off, at which point you can chug your girlie drink and eat a toasted sandwich. Just for the record, some of the words from the final round included "xerostomia," "cephelalgia," and "quinsyberry." Guess what? Unless you're watching a bunch of adorably pre-pubescent nerdlingers on a sports network (why do they have spelling bees on sports networks?), spelling is NOT fun. I'm glad I snapped out of it. Thank God for dictionary.com.

Last night, Isaac waited in the rush line to get us tickets to the opera. I should have worn my Phantom mask. We ended up with standing room only tickets. They are actually numbered! There are actual spots where you stand at the back! We stood until the first intermission (guess what people? Madame Butterfly has TWO intermissions?!) and then found our way to some unoccupied seats. Not a second too soon. You can't stand for 4 hours in these.

It was really nice being at the opera, although the couple from New Jersey sitting next to us didn't like the spare, modern set decor. They brought their own pillows in a plastic shopping bag. They make chemical coatings for lab instruments. Anywho, I didn't realize that I actually didn't know the Madame Butterfly storyline until I was sitting at a performance of Madame Butterfly. I do have a high tolerance for olden-times stories and the differences in our cultures then and now, but it was a giant load of Western imperialist crap. Not that it bothered me. Everyone loves a tragic love story. I just wanted Madame Butterfly to get to the harakiri already but well, the direction in this show was more symbolic than anything else.

This morning, I asked my friend Agnes (always game) to come with me for standby tickets to a taping of the View, which meant that she got up super-early (6:30 am) to meet me on the train, walk over to the waterside studio, stand in line, and then get turned away. A ha ha, oops. Sorry Agnes! So we walked 5th Avenue all the way downtown and I got lunch with my friend Matt who showed me photos of his baby at Halloween - dressed as an owl. WHO?! I could just eat that baby, too cute.

Now Isaac and I are off for a night on the town. I'm kind of exhausted!

1 Comments:

Blogger Michael said...

"xerostomia"
"can i have the definition?"
"dry mouth"
"what is the origin?"
"greek"
"xerostomia. can you use it in a sentence?"
"i have such bad xerostomia that i need to drink a 60 oz of coke."
"xerostomia. x-e-r-o-s-t-o-m-i-a. xerostomia." (pregnant pause -- no ding)

oh man, i woulda so cleaned up in the final round.

12:16 AM  

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