The Scripps National Spelling Bee: The Nerd Sporting Event of the Year

Who ever would have thought that spelling bees would become so cool? In recent years, we've seen a major novel (Bee Season, which was also made into a film), movies (Akeelah and the Bee), and a Tony-nominated musical (The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee) revolve around competitive spelling.

I have always found spelling bees weirdly fascinating. Whenever I am channel surfing and come across a competition on local cable, I always stop to watch. I'm not sure what it is, but I think it's the element of suspense. Will the kid get to the end of a word without making a mistake? To me, this is way more exciting than any televised sporting event!

You can catch all the action. ESPN360 will air the quarterfinals (today from 2:00-5:30 pm, ET); ESPN will air the semifinals (tomorrow from 11:00 am-2:000 pm, ET); and on Friday night, ABC will air the final round of The Scripps National Spelling Bee in prime time. Unfortunately, it will be hosted by the ubiquitous and smarmy Tom Bergeron. I can only hope he won't be using any dance puns or showing videos of cheap crotch shots between rounds.

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Amy Kane spends as much quality time with her television as possible, when she's not busy at her day job as a cube dweller.