Thursday, March 19, 2009

Mad About Scrabble Beta

“God grant me the serenity to accept the words I cannot change, the courage to play the tiles I can, and the wisdom to use the triple word score.”

This quote is known as the Scrabble Serenity Prayer and sums up my latest obsession – Facebook’s Scrabble Beta. I love being able to play Scrabble with total strangers or good friends at my leisure. Sometimes a game lasts an entire week. I have convinced myself that at age 39 I need to keep my mind agile – that’s why I play 3 or 4 games at a time. Yeah right! I play for the competition and the friendly banter and complaining that goes along with Scrabble.

Nothing beats playing the Z on a triple word score or discovering that a word you were just playing around with is really a word!! Which brings me to an interesting phenomena – I haven’t heard of half the words I play. Scrabble Beta has a wonderful built in dictionary that allows you to “test” a word before playing the word. For instance, do you know what QANAT means? I sure don’t, but it’s a great word to play when you don’t have a U for your Q. How about the word KEITLOA? Someone played this one in a game against me – I am convinced this person is either an English professor or has found a really good word generator. Did you know PLOTZ is a word? According to it means to collapse or faint, as from surprise, excitement, or exhaustion. That’s what happened to my friend, Chris, when she played this word in a recent game on a double word score.

In addition to the excitement of the game there are also those irritants that come with Scrabble. There are no two-letter C or two-letter V words which makes it hard to build a word underneath another word ( a great way to score big with 1 point letters). I am thinking about petitioning Webster’s about making VA a word just so I’ll have some options. Then there are the times when you play a few letters and you pick them right back up again from the “bag”. Or when your letters start singing “Old MacDonald” – EIEIO!

The coup de grace in Scrabble is when you are down by 75 and you swap all of your letters and end up spelling a great word like GIGANTIC which uses all of your letters (a 50 point bonus). Wasn’t that a great move, Dad? Of course, he beat me anyway.

By the way a QANAT is a gently sloping underground tunnel for irrigation purposes
and KEITLOA are a variety of the black rhinoceros having the posterior horn equal to or longer than the anterior horn. Who knew? Who cares – they pay off big in Scrabble!

Criss Cross


  1. Awesome post! :) Maybe I can glean some hints on how to beat you at Scrabble! :)

  2. LOL, love the post! Welcome to the blog world. :D