A 15-year-old girl with a 500-texts-per-day habit is? well, I guess not necessarily news these days. But when her skills win her a cool 50 grand, well that just makes me want to pick up my cell phone and practice.
Kate Moore, 15, of Des Moines, Iowa, beat out 250,000+ competitors to win the $50,000 grand prize at the L.G. National Texting Championship in New York on Tuesday. She outperformed rivals in speed, accuracy and a knowledge round, in which contestants were quizzed on texting acronyms. During that segment, there was one piece of shorthand that stymied all the contestants: PAW. (Do you know what it is? Scroll to the bottom for the answer.*)
There was also some wacky stuff like blindfolded texting and ? get this ? a ?pressure cooker? round. Basically, actors dressed up like emoticons to distract competitors while they texted tongue twisters. Competitor Jordan Rowe, 21, stumbled over "Which wicked witch wished which more wicked witch in the well?" while a human emoticon talked smack about her sister.
Another round had contestants run an obstacle course while texting. (Sounds like an episode of ?I Survived a Japanese Game Show.?)
On Tuesday, the remaining contestants had to speed-text lengthy messages accurately. The final round hinged on the following: ?Zippity Dooo Dahh Zippity Ayy...MY oh MY, what a wonderful day! Plenty of sunshine Comin' my way....Zippitty Do Dah Zippity Aay! WondeRful Feeling Wonderful day!? Moore kept the everyone in suspense when she forgot to hit 'send? after her last text, but when she did, her phone buzzed to notify her of the win.
You?d think Moore has been bending the thumbs since she was a tot, but in reality, she's only had a text-capable phone for less than a year. Even so, says her mother, the teen once worked up a 294-page bill. Good thing she's on an unlimited plan.
After the contest, CNN conducted an interview with the grand champion via text, and it went something like this:
CNN: OMG U r ltrlly the wrld's bst txter. How does it feel?
Moore: It feels the best! Im so prd of myself & it feels aswm that ive gottn so far! :)
CNN: How mny txts do u snd a day? A month?
Moore: Uhhh about lyk 400-500 in a day, an avrg of 12014 thousand a month?
CNN: Wht r u going to do w the 50 k?
Moore: Idk yet! Prlly spend a good amount of the $$$......but ya gotta save some 2 b smart of course!
CNN: Do u ever get in trubl in skwl 4 txting 2 much?
Moore: haah just once or 2ce, teachers hv seen it and taken it away...lol that sux when that happens tho.
CNN: What's ur crzst txting story?
Moore: Haha I actually have a scar on my hand from txtingg....i was txting on the top bunk and I sat up cuz it was a cool txt and then I hit it in the ceiling fan
CNN: Do ur thumbs hurt?
Moore: Hahah not at all! Ud b surprised they don't get stressed out.
Moore: cya! :)
*If you don't know what PAW stands for, you?re probably kind of old, like me. (I had no idea.) PAW is short for ?parents are watching.? If you've got a kid who's texting or IM?ing when this pops up, you?ll know that the Junior is self-editing.