New York-Sai Gunturi always dreamed of this moment. His slight frame not built for power, speed, attractiveness, or strong winds stood tall today as he had his father accept his Scripps Howard National Spelling Bee Trophy. With crocodile tears that were quickly wiped clean by his doting mother, Sai shared his impromptu victory dance with many of today's non-winners (editor's note: see here 'losers').
"I have been waiting many years for this achievement. Like Bobby Fischer in chess or Andrew Michael Hall in acting, I too look forward to an adulthood brimming with unfulfilled potential." He went on to add that even though spelling was mightily over-rated with the introduction of the spell check function on most computer systems in the country, he was sure this feat would enable him now to be "a total chic magnet."
While there were no American children among the top 10, educators around the country firmly pointed out that setting standards for such a high achievement would prove dangerous for President Bush's new accountability initiative. "If we produce a spelling champion, then what next, a Cowbel Prize Winner?! No sir, you let them Iraqis keep pumping out ABC stars."
Sai, sure to be an instant local celebrity, prepared for his life after a championship. "Well I figure I'll rest up for a while, you know, get back to some unfinished business" Gunturi lamented, clutching a fresh pack of Yogiu cards.
He might also take time to reflect on the controversy he created when, on the second day of the competition, Sai came out in a "Bitch's UP, Ho's Down" shirt. "Purely a mental ploy." Insisted the young scholar. "There was a tough nut I knew I had to crack from Pakistan, I needed my own personal Kashmir."