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Spelling is a sport, and its athletes dab too

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Spell hard, dab hard

Alex Wong/Getty Images

About 22 years ago, ESPN made the fateful decision to air the later rounds of the Scripps National Spelling Bee contest on TV. In including the act of spelling difficult-to-spell words in front of an audience of mostly family members, ESPN was signaling then and there that those contestants are, and forever would be, considered athletes. (Case closed on that front, I'm afraid. No way around it.) And we all know that athletes dab.

In fact, here are the spellers now, dabbing aggressively and without restraint:

Shoutout to the audience member at the end there that, despite his less-than-stellar dabs, was doing so in celebration of the word "nagelfluh." He's the younger brother of contestant Mitchell from Marblehead, MA, who correctly nailed a word that sounds like a particularly congested aquatic creature, but is in fact "a massive variegated conglomerate forming a prominent member of the Miocene series in the Alps," aka a rock. That's dab-worthy alright.

Whatever your opinion on the sporting merit of spelling, poker, billiards, or any other sport that does not involve gigantic human beings performing feats of athleticism in a team setting, you can't help but appreciate the young kids' dedication to the culture. They're all young Cam Newton's, just dabbing on them folks when they spell "condignly" without missing that "g."