No, I don’t hate rednecks or find city folk superior. I hate the word “rural” because it just so happens to be the word I misspelled in the 4th grade regional spelling bee.
In my defense, I’d never heard such a word. I thought the adult staring at me was full of shit. He’s making this up, I thought. I can’t even begin to imagine how that strange sound would be spelled.
So I took a stab at it. And failed. Miserably.
This was an extremely embarrassing moment in Time. It was only the second round of the contest, and my teachers were both very surprised and disappointed to see me excluded so quickly.
I returned to school that day ashamed of my failure. I’d performed quite well during the math portion, but was the top speller in my class and I had failed.
The return to mediocrity was swift and painful.