The time: 8 pm January 20

The event: Inauguration celebration

The place: All over Santa Fe

Last night, after a long day of hearing Happy Inauguration Day!, I was as happy as the next guy about the events of the morning. New president, no more "War on Grammar," non-believers getting some big ups (it's got such a nicer ring to it than "unbelievers" doesn't it?). But celebrating just wasn't on the agenda for me. Several ignored phone calls and IMs after I got home from work I decided to let the celebrants have their shindigs while I sat at home, alone on the computer and played some online word games.

The whole reason I signed up for

in the first place was

. Getting the chance to word nerd at work (where wording and nerding is kind of the order of the day anyway) in a more competitive but fun way sold me and stole me away from

. But then Scrabulous got shut down (stupid intellectual property laws) and the 'book became a different kind of diversion. But damn it, I missed my wording out. My old games were saved but I wanted something new, something different, a challenger who would play me right then and there. So I logged on and found a game (Scrabulous is now called Lexulous, a name that's not nearly as fun to say outloud) with a total stranger. At first, I held my own. A 60 play with "violably" put me up with a solid lead. But I didn't know my opponent and Maree S, whoever s/he is, kicked my ass. This online stranger, whose profile picture is of a seriously cute little dog hails from nowhere that I could see and now, for me, exists only as the person who scored 90-some points with the "word" "caryotin." Being online I searched and searched for the word and couldn't find it in any dictionary. I found several Scrabble places that said it's a valid word but no meaning. A

search yields several hits that it's a valid word and a bunch of sites in Chinese. What does this word mean? Damn you Maree S. You were cheating though right?

S/he had to be. There's no way this mysterious force could have pulled a word like that out of thin air without the help of some online cheating system. So while my stats say I lost I feel good about my solid 286 score, which came without the aid of any online word finder. Maree S probably won't ask for a rematch, but if s/he does, I'm not falling for it.

Maybe Maree S was a real word genius or maybe s/he was using this bitchin'

but I'm thinking not.