Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Spelling A Victory

Do you know what a ryot is? What about an amu? Qat? I ask because less than a month ago, I had no idea these words existed. Now I am about them because I have an iPhone and more specifically, I play Words With Friends (WWF) and I play to win.

WWF is an app version of Scrabble. Instead of seating around with a group of friends, I can play this classic board game everywhere and at any moment. This means that at every moment my cell phone was battery life, I can be learning a new word. That’s how I discovered qat.

A friend played it against me and I was shocked. I knew there were ‘q’ words without the ‘u,’ but such a short one must be something she made up. I Googled it and qat is a real word meaning an illicit drug made from plant roots that can cause hallucinations. It is sort of like a natural version of acid, and a good vocabulary word. Plus, it’s worth like 20 points.

I learned ryot by happenstance. I had three letters left, a ‘y,’ a ‘t,’ and an ‘o.’ The ‘r’ was on the board and I knew I could spell rot, but that would have left my with a ‘y’ and that letter is hard to play be itself. I placed all my titles on the board and just starting trying any combinations I could think of. Luckily ryot was successful and even though I lost that game, I had learned that farmers in India who are bound to the land they till are called ryots.

I’m a Communications student, but in truth, I’m really an English major. I love words and this game is not only expanding by word knowledge, but challenging it. Quick, there’s a ‘w’ on the board and you have ‘a,’ ‘z,’ ‘t’ and ‘l.’ What word can you spell? Waltzing never seemed more important in my life than in that moment.

Amu is a scientific measurement of something’s mass. I cannot wait to write something involving that word. I don’t care what it is, but it will be glorious. I’ve lost a few games of WWF but adding these words to my vocabulary is the best part and well worth the defeat. Never have I had so much fun spelling.