We have already established that many of you share my propensity to get a word stuck in my head, and because I have grown fond of you I am passing on some important information as a public service announcement, so that you can benefit from my tragic mistakes:
Do not - no matter how strong the temptation or how great the urge - DO NOT watch the televised finals of the National Spelling Bee.
This year, the finals aired in prime time on ABC on June 1. One full month ago.
And for a month, this is what's been on my mind: heiligenschein.
I can't shake it.
Heiligenschein. It wasn't even the winning word. It was an 11th round elimination. But it was high drama. In fact, from time to time I find the whole dialogue coursing through my brain - first the cool, level-headed, unemotional pronoucer, then the increasingly anxious and emotional speller:
"The word is heiligenschein."
"Heiligenscheid? Or heiligenschein?"
"Are there any other pronunciations of the word?"
This morning I went for a walk and discovered halfway through that I was walking in time to the cadence of this dialogue.
So, please, it's too late for me, but save yourself. Find out when the next National Spelling Bee will air, and make other plans. Cancel your cable if you need to. Do whatever it takes.
In fact, now that I think about it... just to be safe, maybe you'd better stop reading my blog as well.