I grew up with well-educated parents who relished verbal sparring. This, combined with my voracious appetite for reading, helped me develop an extensive vocabulary.
After my freshman year of high school in San Anselmo, CA, my parents moved us to Pawnee City, Nebraska - population 1300. The high school there was not noted for attracting stellar teachers. Many of the school's teachers came from the nearby Peru State Teachers College.
In this school, I would occasionally exercise my vocabulary in a quixotic attempt to stave off boredom. Once, after I had completed a particularly complicated verbal gymnastics routine, the teacher, who was also the basketball coach, said in frustration, "You think you're pretty eruditic, don't you Kunkel?"
"The word is erudite."