H-e-c-h-s-h-e-r

By Forward Staff

Published June 09, 2006, issue of June 09, 2006.

Saryn Hooks didn’t end up winning the 79th annual Scripps National Spelling Bee last week in Washington. But before finishing third, the 14-year-old girl from Taylorsville, N.C., managed to stump the judges on the word “hechsher” — the endorsement signifying that something has been certified kosher.

The judges disqualified her, saying that the correct spelling was “hechscher.” But family members of other contestants, checking on their laptops, quickly reported that it was the judges who, in fact, were offering the treyf spelling.

Hooks was reinstated, but she was no match for “icteritious” (look it up).



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