Andrea (English girl’s name) does not sound like Andrea (Italian boy’s name)
scribbles tagged ‘phonological similarity’
I pronounce ‘Were’ like the ’ur’ in ‘blur’ with an ‘w’ added to the front = wur
I pronounce ‘Where’ like ‘air’ with a ‘w’ on the front = wair
7pm one evening, at the end of a long day an Italian colleague said “I’m working with Michele“. Myself and another English person simultaneously reacted with ”Working?!”, shocked that anyone would be able to continue working.
Italian: “Yes, working to the Hotel”
We understood. “Oh, Walking”
The Italian encouraged us to say ‘walking’ a few more times, then imitated us. His British accent for this one word became impeccable.
“How did you do that?”
“It sounds like that Chinese pan, the Wok, I say Woking”
And indeed that’s what he said, it was easy to understand and sounded awfully posh.
Build sounds like Billed
While I was busy extolling the unpredictable behaviour of Twitter, this year’s intern-
sometimes you sound just like my mother
Probably not a reference to mother’s wisdom. But we were able to agree that I have an amazing ability to
empathise with non-technical people while simultaneously predicting where Microsoft have hidden valuable features
- telling facebook that I don’t need to diet, I’m not fat.
- asking the adverts to stop harrassing me.
For years I’ve been asking, but Facebook ignores me. Facebook is targeting advertising and I have set my gender to female so I must be in need of getting thinner because no type of thin is going to be thin-enough for an industry that feeds on the image of women as childlike (small and hairless) sexual objects.
It’s a good job I’m stubborn and opinionated otherwise I’d just cry and diet myself into an early grave because happiness cannot be found in a diet and the pressure to diet wont stop because I get thinner.
“are you the princess?” the 67 year old lady asks the 7 year old girl, adding “I’m a dinosaur”
“no you’re not” even though the girl is already displaying advanced gender conformity, she hasn’t yet refined her agism prejudices… …she can still spot the difference between dinosaurs and old ladies
“No, not really, but it’s what old people call themselves” The child makes an accurate observation about aging “when I grow up my hair wont be blonde anymore” The old bint espouses the popular psuedo-feminist position of ‘choice freedom’ within the boundaries of legitimate girly behaviours “you can dye your hair any colour that you want”. The mother sighs and adds “she’s a very girlie girl, she’ll only wear dresses and loves pink and purple”
I press my face against the train window watching the beautiful English, Dorset, countryside fly-by – but I can’t escape the conversations of popularist female conformity…
Extensive sounds live Expensive
Example from a BBC news report:
“Our staff treated a five-year-old boy in cardiac arrest but despite extensive efforts they were unable to resuscitate him”
wendy: Norfolk and Norwich
The Canadian’s face instantly flushed red as he smiled, then catuiously asked
Did you just say no fücking nor witch?
When I can pay the heating bills and buy food -
Winter is wonderful
Noel sounds like null
Bloodshed pronounced in a received accent sounds like Bristolian pronunciation of Budget
there will be budget so wear a flack jacket
When thinking in a Bristol accent with a hint of NW US phrasing and twang:
compare sounds like cohm pair
leading to typing mistakes, more than once, HahahahHAhaHAHAHahahahaha (the sound of manic laughing fading into the distance)
IT support: hello, this is [name] in Salt Lake city (US Accent)
Wendy: Oh! I hope its sunny in Salt Lake city
IT Support: it’s 4am in the morning
Wendy: Ah, gosh, well, not sunny then, I’ve got this problem…
[problem fixing conversation and Wendy starts falling asleep then wakes up when]
IT Support: Wonkey, I’m even talking British now, wonkey
Autumn sounds like awesome when pronounced with an US accent. Recently one US friend commented upon returning to the UK:
It’s good to be back. It’s awesome
can lead to fatal misunderstandings if pronounced:
execute if manager
I heard “what do you prefer, the incest or the songs” (NPR weekend edition)
insects sounds like incest
email conversation today, what can you take onto a plane with you?:
colleague 1: aren’t you even permitted to take on magazines, newspapers, books/ small books, pocket books, folded newspapers or magazines in pockets?
colleague 2: what I heard is that you can take stuff on board with you, you’re just not allowed to take any liquid in your carrion….
Must stop giggling and do some work….
Bass sounds like Becks
Wendy: “I ordered Bass, this isn’t Bass”
Server: “Yes it is Bass” (Becks?)
Wendy: “This is not Bass” (Wow, American servers ARGUE with their customers!!!!!) “Bass is amber, this is yellow”
LaCroix: “That is not Bass, this is Bass” (raises her pint of Bass)
Server takes the pint, returns with a Bass and apologises. Phew phonological beer-lager disaster avoided.
Tenerife sounds like Tel-Aviv
This can provide exciting, unexpected, vacation opportunities. Excerpt from the Times
“Michael Moore and Diane Bell from West Yorkshire, booked a holiday to Tenerife but ended up in Tel Aviv. They went to Thailand but did not like it and went to a local travel agent, who misheard them. â€œIâ€™d never seen Tel Aviv spelt before,â€ Ms Bell said. â€œI thought it was what people in Thailand called Tenerife.â€”
W Miss Heard
Confusion sounds like Confucian
This can produce a phonologically based spelling challenge. No prizes for guessing who’s recently made that Malapropism.
This Diner conversation dumbfounded me:
Wendy: “I thought I’d ordered a SPANISH omelette”
Waitress: “I thought you ordered a SWISS CHEESE AND BACON omelette“
‘Spanish’ sounds like ‘Swiss cheese and bacon’?
I couldn’t hear the similarty. Later I engaged the waitress in small-talk. She found my speech very difficult to hear even when I used my best Queen’s English and diction. No mumbling. It reminded me of when I first arrived in the US. Just listening to people talk had been suprisingly, physically, tiring. I gave her a big tip for trying so hard to overcome the difficulties of my poor spoken ‘American’.
Mail instead of Main
within an email
to a male
”cars ‘eee ain’ begit’n maw carn-tex’
Regional accent outbreak. It means ‘context UNPUBLISHABLE’.
*photograph of Planet-Wendy painting** attached.
** the painting*** actually IS hung on the wall in my garage.
***I’m open to painting purchase offers, make me a bid… ….I promise not to cry…
When pronounced with my regional accent 7 sounds like:
The River Severn is Britains longest river and local to my formative youth. It has the 2nd highest tidal rise and fall in the world and helps constrain splushy fraternization between the English and Welsh. The name Severn is published all-over-the-house, in folklore stories, on road signs, businesses, bridges ”anna loik‘ (regional pronunciation). The once local ‘Severn Trent’ water authority was purchased by an US company during the Thatcherite sell-offs of British publicly owned resources. It now has research sites on the Columbia River in Tri-Cities, WA.
When pronounced with my regional accent Severn sounds like:
This marvellous river is responsible for many numerical spelling errors that I loyally persist to this day.
7 = Severn
On the positive side:
- None of my Cheques have bounced… ….yet.
- To help local USians understand me I can ‘awmows tawk praahpaaaah’
In an English accent, spoken to a US person…
‘fries’ sounds like ‘rice’
- whenever I order Fries’ in the works canteen, the server moves to add some ’rice’ to my plate. Even putting the word ‘french’ in front of ‘fries’ fails to solve this problem. I’m not sure what to do. Normally I say ‘No‘ repeat the word ‘fries‘ while pointing to the deep-fryer.
‘Hiya’ sounds like ‘How are you?’
- Which apparently is the phrase that lead to the truncated greeting that I use. I use ‘Hiya’ as a verbal greeting with friends and at work. A persistent personal habit picked up in Northern England in the 1980′s.
- Using it can be dangerous.
- In England people reply with a chirpy smile and another ‘hiya’. My US acquaintences generally reply by telling me how they are… often I’m unrepared for the earnest content and detail. Maybe I should start saying ‘Yo’?
- The greeting is popular for internet mediated communication, though not quite as popular as the even further truncated ‘hi’