\IM-prest\ , noun:
an advance of money; loan.
I didn’t need a loan, really. I just didn’t want to pay $10 to get into the school play. I showed my staff ID at the door and said, “is this a night I can get in free?” (there’s always a night we get in free). “No,” was the student’s response, “but you could be a guest speller.”
“Ok,” I said. She wrote down my name and I asked, “what’s that mean?”
She told me I’d be up on stage to spell a word as the cast put on “The 25thAnnual Putnam County Spelling Bee.” I figured walking on stage, spelling a word, then sitting down was absolutely worth this sort of imprest of $10.
I was on the stage for the first half of the production. I stood, sat, twirled, held on while the bleachers I was sitting on were spun, went up to the mic three times, then sat down, still waiting to spell a word. It was nerve wrecking, but also, quite lovely.
During the show, EIGHT blog words were used! Oh how I longed to be assigned a word like “antediluvian” or “chimerical.” But when my name was called, I walked up to the mic, pulled it down because it was 8 inches too tall, and waited for my word. “Crah-pod.”
“A species of bullfrog.”
“Can it be pronounced ‘CRAY-pod?’”
“Sure. But it’d be wrong.”
“OK,” I said. “Crapod. C-r-a-p-o-d. Crapod.”
Ding. “That is incorrect. C-r-a-p-a-u-d.”
I really should have known! The spotlight blinded my better judgment. Twas a lovely (and free) evening at the Bee.