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Words, April 17

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Little time remains to register for the second annual Central Arkansas Adult Spelling Bee. The bee will be held at the Pulaski Heights Christian Church on Saturday, May 3, but contestants must register by Saturday, April 20. Any Arkansas resident over 21 is eligible. Registration can be done on-line at www.aradultbee.info or by contacting Pulaski Heights Christian Church at 4724 Hillcrest Ave., telephone 663-8149. There's a $10 entry fee. Cash awards of $100, $50 and $25 and plaques will go to the first-, second- and third-place finishers. The event will benefit the Interfaith Hospitality Network of Little Rock.

Spelling was not a strong point for whoever proofread a full-page advertisement for Arkansas in the April issue of Smithsonian magazine. One of the attractions featured prominently in the ad is “Garvin Woodland Gardens.” The donor's name was Garvan.

“REFORMISTS MAKE GAINS IN IRAN VOTE: Conservative opponents of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad made a strong showing in Iran's parliamentary elections … Reformists, meanwhile, claimed to have made better-than-expected gains … ”

“Would they send their child to see a convicted child pornographist? … I don't want a call from a mom or dad who takes their child to see a doctor with an injury and then finds out they're a convicted child pornographist.”

Jennifer Stodos writes, “When I was a girl, there were reformers, not reformists. And though we didn't talk about pornography much, when we did, we called Hugh Hefner a pornographer, not a pornographist. What's changed?”

Nothing, really; either suffix is correct. Fashions change in usage as in other areas. Until a few years ago, the short form of microphone was always written as mike. In the last few years, mic has virtually driven mike from the stage. I suppose the people who use the mic are called performists, or soon will be.

He's Rowdy! He's Hardy! He's Rowdy Hardy!

Now that Arkansas has two professional baseball teams, we'll have twice as many good baseball names. This one is a pitcher for the new Northwest Arkansas Naturals. Or maybe a pitchist.

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