Yiddish Carries The Day

You know you’ve landed in Facebook hell when your favorite Scrabulous dies an early death due to a legal battle. Then to make things worse, the beta substitute of Hasbro’s Scrabble crashes and burns. However, you know you’ve landed in some kind of Jew heaven when Yiddish rules the National Scrabble Championship.

On NPR’s “All Things Considered,” the Wall Street Journal’s Stefan Fatsis reported the big news. More than 660 players played for four days in 28 games in Orlando. Nigel Richards, a security engineer from New Zealand, who lives in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia was holding steady in a tie-breaker at 370 points against Brian Cappalletto (all you word geeks out there: just look at all those double letters). Cappalletto is an options trader from Chicago and a former national and world Scrabble champion. The boys were at a stand-off. There was nary a tile left in the bag.

These guys are smarties. Brian had played words like scerrying and sarcine, Fatsis reports. Nigel had played innerve and penates.

Nigel’s winning word?

Shuln. The Yiddish plural for shul.

That’s right, people. Shuln as in synagogues.

ck, this one’s for you!

Lisa Klug

Wordie. Foodie. Jewie. Nerdie. Ashkefardic keyboard addict. Visit me at lisaklug.com, on my travels and in the pages of my books, "Hot Mamalah: The Ultimate Guide for Every Woman of the Tribe," and "Cool Jew: The Ultimate Guide for Every Member of the Tribe."

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  1. themiddle

    7/31/2008 at 12:38 am

    Great post!

    Who are you?

    Never mind, I looked deep into the bowels of Jewlicious and figured it out. Welcome, whoever you are.

  2. lisa

    7/31/2008 at 12:44 am


    c’est moi.

  3. Yoni

    7/31/2008 at 1:10 am


    foreign words are allowed in scrabble?

    I am so pissed!

  4. Pingback: This Week’s Links « Moment Magazine Blog

  5. Ephraim

    7/31/2008 at 12:33 pm

    Ummmmm…..what has ck got to do with Yiddish? He’s Morroccan, right?

    Now, if the winning word had been shakshuka…..

  6. Ben

    7/31/2008 at 1:40 pm

    Yeah, hold on, if foreign words are allowed…

    Can’t you spell massive, high scoring words like “Staatsangehörigkeit”? I mean, obviously it’d be harder, but…

  7. froylein

    7/31/2008 at 2:01 pm

    Ben, try “Einkommenueberschussrechnung”.

  8. Ben

    8/1/2008 at 12:42 pm

    That word SO did not come up on the online Scrabble dictionary.

  9. Chaim Katzenellenbogen

    8/22/2008 at 3:16 pm

    Get ready for the YIddish Scrabble Contest.


  10. Pingback: Yiddish, Schmiddish…It’s Here to Stay | RJ Blog

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