Cheat at Scrabble!

Yes, yes, you heard me. But it's for a good cause. (And anyway, I've posted this too late for you to actually sign up to cheat at Scrabble; now you can just go watch other miscreants cheat at Scrabble. I meant to post this Monday … but I suppose you can just consider this as me being over-protective.)
826NYC.org, a non-profit that encourages young writers, is having a fundraiser Scrabble tournament TOMORROW, January 19, at their offices at 372 Fifth Avenue in Brooklyn.
The tournament is a benefit for their writing programs, and it has a twist: teams sign up and raise sponsorship money. Each team is allowed a certain number of "cheats" that they buy with the money they raised. So the more money a team raises for 826NYC, the more likely they are to win. Genius!
Here's the price list:
1. Trade out a letter—$25
2. Wheel of Fortune: buy a vowel—$50
3. Flip a letter over and make it blank—$100
4. Add 10 to any letter’s value—$150
5. Add Q, Z, or X to any word, anywhere—$200
6. Passport: play a word in any language—$250
7. Consult the dictionary for one turn—$300
8. Consult the Scrabble word list for one turn—$400
9. Reject another team’s word—$450
10. Invent a word (must have a definition)—$500
Obviously, I'm most interested in #s 7 and 10. For #7, which dictionary are they going to use? A big dictionary is going to be much more valuable than a little one, and a dictionary of abbreviations would be excellent for humorous effect … And for #10 — I hope they record the new words and definitions!
I'm also very pleased that inventing a word is the priciest cheat. Just as it should be …
If any of you gentle readers attend, would you leave a report in the comments? I'd go myself, save for the trifling inconvenience of living in Chicago …

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4 thoughts on “Cheat at Scrabble!

  1. It could be fun if combination, or jabberwocky-style words could be included. I’m kind of fond of ‘confuzzled’, myself. Pricey, but you could get quite a score with the double ‘z’ in there…

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  2. This is just too wonderful–the idea of an organized cheating at Scrabble.I have to think of ways to use it–if the kids clean the bathroom, they get to add one letter. Every toy they’re willing to donate, they can invent a word….(though my DD has invented at least 2 words in her lifetime. One, we lost. I can’t even remember what it was, but it was great. The other, we made sure to preserve: “fenifidy” (fe-NIF-ih-dee): stuff you have to do. In a sentence: “since you and daddy have a lot of fenifidy tomorrow and will be busy, can I watch TV?”)

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  3. I think there’s actually a scrabble dictionary; it seems like that’s the one they’d likely be required to use. but. how would that be different than the scrabble worrd list, I wonder?

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  4. @Erin GActually, there are several “official” English scrabble “dictionaries” (which are clsoer to word lists): the SOWPODS, OSPD, OSW, and TWL. French (ODS), Spanish and Dutch (SWL) also do, amongst others, but they manage to have only one IIRC.

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