Everyone knows it's "i before e, except after c," but Alamo Drafthouse wants to see if that rule stands when you add some IBUs.
On March 3, Glass Half Full Taproom - the place that puts the 'draft' in the Drafthouse's Richardson location - will roll out the first installment of an all-new monthly series where grown up folks vie for sudsy spelling success.
Set for the first Tuesday of every month, Adult Spelling Bee starts off a lot like your typical elementary school competition. You know, "May I hear that in a sentence?"
But those rules quickly diverge, and they actually get a little complicated, which seems to be the point. The harder the funnier, right? Especially after half an hour of 90 Minutes IPA or swinging a Velvet Hammer, both of which you can find among Glass Half Full's myriad beers on draft.
Unlike Geeks Who Drink or other team-based quiz/trivia style games proven popular in pubs, Adult Spelling Bee contestants compete individually over three rounds. There's no "drinking game" style requirements, but participants are encouraged to grab a pint at the bar, should they choose. There are 12 spots for play on any given night, and registration begins an hour before the first round, which we're guessing allots a little time to grease the cognitive wheels with a pre-game drink.
As game play begins, contestants choose the level of difficulty, with harder questions correlating to higher points. When it comes to words, Alamo thinks the weirder the better. According to their website, they might include anything from "planets in the Star Trek mythos to condiments you'd find in a Korean restaurant."
So, all those hours spent staring at Sriracha bottles, trying to desperately unlock its mystery, might have finally paid off. Along those lines, it could be a good idea to go through your geekiest childhood possessions, as well.
"I don't want to spill too much because I don't want people studying, but, at some point this season, I'll be picking out spelling words from the list of names from Pokémon," said the event's host, Stephanie Stone-Robb of Blind Tiger Entertainment.
The six contestants who score the most points in round one move onto the second one, where things get ... complicated.
According to Stone-Robb, Round 2 players "blindly pick a wild card, which could allow them to either increase their own chances or could decrease their opponents. They could randomly pick the card that allows them to pass their word to another speller, or the one that lets them request a different word or one of 4 other surprises. They can only use that wild card once through the rest of the game."
That's hard to understand sober. Expect madcap misspellings and gentle protests galore.
The top four head into Round 3, where game play commences sudden death style. Stone-Robb said everyone who makes it to the finals wins a prize, which include movie tickets, food and beverage vouchers from Alamo, and other fun items.