Standard US English Dialect?

Alice Faber faber at HASKINS.YALE.EDU
Tue Apr 15 17:41:07 UTC 2008

Paul Johnston wrote:

> I could conceive of cool having fronting and stool not having it, or
> even of cool= "good, in  fashion, etc." having it and cool = "sort of
> cold" not having it.

Years ago, I heard a radio commercial invoking exactly this distinction.
Since it was upwards of 15 years ago (on an NYC station), the details
are a little hazy. But it involved a dad trying to sound with-it to his
kid by saying that the product being advertised (Tasty Kakes?) was cool
[kuwl], to which the kid replied that ice is [kuwl] but the product is
[kyl] (with heavily fronted /u/).

Alice Faber                                    faber at
Haskins Laboratories                           tel: (203) 865-6163 x258
New Haven, CT 06511 USA                        fax (203) 865-8963

The American Dialect Society -

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