Watching little kids sweat bullets in the Scripps National Spelling Bee is certainly entertaining. But to see celebrities turn red-faced for not knowing how to spell an obvious word, like, say, “potato”? Priceless. Tonight, watch bestselling author Dave Eggers, Catherine Keener (Please Give), comedian Kristen Schaal (Flight of the Conchords), radio wonk Ira Glass (This American Life), author Michael Chabon (Gentlemen of the Road), and other competitors squirm in their seats at The Spelling Beast, a benefit for 826NYC, a writing program for children founded by Eggers. Unlike the Scripps National Spelling Bee, teams who raised enough money can “bee-ribe” the judges for help with tricky words. How do you spell “cheating”?

Thu., Sept. 30, 7 p.m., 2010