Edith Fuller is a six year old girl from Tulsa, Oklahoma, who qualified for the Scripps National Spelling Bee at the tender age of five. What, precisely, were you doing at age five? Think about it for a sec. Probably not this.
Fuller was five when she qualified for nationals in March and, per ABC News, she isn’t the first six year old to compete on the national level, but she is the youngest six year old — a very important distinction. She made it to Scripps and competed Wednesday, spelling the words “tapas” and “nyctinasty” correctly. Unfortunately, as Tulsa NBC affiliate KJRH reports, Fuller didn’t make it to the final rounds; though she spelled both words correctly, she didn’t pass the written test and therefore was eliminated.
Here’s some footage from her qualifying rounds; watch as she spells “sasparilla” with ease and knocks “Croesus” out of the park, too. As an adult woman who still can’t remember the proper spelling of the word “occasionally” and had to type “recommendation” out three times before getting it right, I salute this young woman’s poise and skill.
Honestly, the Scripps National Spelling Bee is the most wonderful time of the year; it airs on ESPN with the same importance as any other sporting event and it features earnest children futzing with a microphone and spelling words like “guetapens” and “scherenschnitte.” Watching children spell words is joyous and stressful in equal measure— what more could you ask for? It’s a nice thing to watch while you’re doing work; just make that window really small and hide it behind your spreadsheets. No one will know, I promise.
The finals start June 1 on ESPN at 10 A.M.