We can't all be Scripps National Spelling Bee champions; that's a lesson I learned early on in life after failing to ever stay standing past the second round of any spelling bee hosted at my elementary school. For the record, that's at least four solid years of misspelling words like "restaurant," "definitely," "occurred," and "calendar." But it appears I'm not alone. Google has released a list of the most commonly misspelled word in every state, and, honestly, it's pretty shocking that in the age of autocorrect and spell checker, the entire United States still finds spelling pretty difficult.
At the 89th Scripps National Spelling Bee in National Harbor, Maryland on Thursday, children 15 and younger spelled words like "eudaemonic," "psoriasis," and "scherenschnitte" in an effort to crown the best of the best. Meanwhile, in my home state of California, the majority of us are apparently spending all our time Googling "how to spell desert," according to data from the global search engine. To be fair, how embarrassing would it be to delve into discussion on the Mohave Dessert only to find you've got your readers thinking of dry cakes due to an extra S?
But it's not just Californians looking for some clarification on which desert is which; "desert" is also the word most commonly spell-checked via Google in Connecticut, Idaho, and Indiana, according to data from Google Trends.
In Maryland, where 284 contestants were narrowed to 10 heading into the final round of the Bee, "cancelled" is the word residents most commonly ask Google for help spelling. Pennsylvanians, Virginians, and Rhode Islanders are also searching for "how to spell cancelled" more than any other word.
"Vacuum" pops up as the most commonly spell-checked word on Google in Montana, Wisconsin, and Maine. In Washington, Missouri, and North Carolina, residents struggle with "pneumonia," and South Dakota, Michigan, and Oklahoma don't feel confident in their knowledge of how to spell "gray." Alaskans might be dreaming of warmer weather, as Google reveals the state searches most commonly for how to spell "Hawaii."
The oddest misspelled word on the list? Google's data shows the most commonly searched word in Massachusetts is (are you ready for this?) "Massachusetts." It doesn't get more ironic than that.
I think so often we forget that, unlike what may happen in Vegas, what we Google doesn't always stay with Google. But if asking Google the correct spelling of a word you're unsure of keeps you from making an embarrassing gaffe in a memo at work (or even just from humiliating yourself in a tweet), then Google away, my friends.