Friday, May 29, 2009

My, that Caerphilly is geusioleptic.....

Geusioleptic: Having or characterized by a pleasant taste or flavor.

MrMartha watched the 2009 Scripps National Spelling Bee last night....and those kids are just amazing.

MrMartha has a huge love of language and words, but has always been challenged when it comes to spelling. In fact, it is hard to recall what life was like in those dark years before SpellCheck!

The amazingly obscure words in the final round would be a challenge anyone working on a post graduate degree in linguistics, so the fact that they are rattled off by twelve year olds is all the more impressive! Always interesting to MrMartha are the food related words that come up in the competition, including the aforementioned geusioleptic (who knew!).

Kavya Shivashankar, last nights champion at the age of thirteen, is herself a young foodie (there's a word you WON'T find in the Bee) — stating in her biography: "I think the word that best describes me would be lickerish — which means fond of good food."

Some of the other food related terms used in the final round of competition:

Simnel: "a rich fruitcake sometimes coated with almond paste and baked for mid-Lent, Easter, and Christmas."

Palatschinken: (the plural of Palatschinke) "Thin egg batter pancakes stuffed with jam."
The contestant who got this word was eliminated in round 11 for spelling it "pallachinkin."

Blancmange: "a dessert made from gelatinous or starchy substances and milk, usually sweetened, flavored, and shaped in a mold." (Also subject of a very funny Monty Python skit)

Deipnosophist: "a person who is an adept conversationalist at table."

Neufch√Ętel: "A small, soft nonripened cheese made from whole or skim milk, with or without cream, and often with condiments added"

Caerphilly: "A mild, white cheese of Welsh origin that is easily crumbled, pulverized, or reduced to powder." And, it's just plain geusioleptic!