The Scripps National Spelling Bee Is The Best Thing On Television Right Now

Hi. How’s things? Do you like your reality television, like, really real? Do you like watching a gentle but stern man in a sports coat and wireframe glasses goad sweaty tweens into acts of brilliance? Do you enjoy seeing the sheer joy of nervous parents as their progeny spells a word correctly on national television? Yes, I thought so. That is why this week is the best week of television. It is the week of the Scripps National Spelling Bee and if your Memorial Day weekend somehow made you lose faith in humanity, this will restore it, posthaste.

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There is something so satisfying about watching these children spell these ridiculous words correctly. These are words that they will never, ever use. These are words that have sat languishing dusty on the shelf, waiting for their time to shine every year. The kids have worked hard as hell to get here — this account from a Scripps veteran is adorable — and they’re so goddamn excited to hang out with other nerds that understand the importance of learning Latin. It’s infectious! It’s sweet! It’s one of the few things that cracks the icy exterior of my heart. I love it. The finals air tonight at 8p.m. on ESPN, so pop some popcorn, get yourself a big pour of whatever it is you like, and settle in.