M153 INDIA ABROAD, JUNE 2013
Wizard of Words
For being a
wizard of words;
for continuing an
For Snigdha Nandipati,
winner of the Scripps
Spelling Bee and the
P Rajendran on the
Special Award for
words are not just
spellings, but give
glimpses into history,
cultures, and more.
champion speller whose
world is not defined by
When Arvind Mahankali clinched the Scripps Howard National Spe- lling Bee this year, Sni- gdha Nandipati, down
in San Diego, California, was in mental
Last year, when Arvind bowed out
with a misspelt ‘Schwanomma,’ Snigdha
had grimaced in empathetic pain.
As in the midst of her pleasure at seeing him eat up ‘knaidel,’ it all came back
“As I was watching it, I was recalling
the memories of the time I was on stage,”
she says. “It is still a wonderful experi-
ence. I’m still, like, really happy. Som-
etimes I can’t believe I really won.”
Gentle reader, cast aside any doubt
young Snigdha may have raised here.
For she did win — and handily, too —
by spelling the final word, ‘guetepans.’
She set off with a nervous sigh of a ‘G’
and, doing her furious double blink,
worked her way through that very literal
trap — by intent and definition.
Snigdha first began working on earn-
Snigdha Nandipati celebrates with her brother Sujan after conquering the word ‘guetepans’ to win the Scripps Howard
National Spelling Bee in 2012.
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