Southern English

Wilson Gray hwgray at GMAIL.COM
Tue Nov 29 04:06:45 UTC 2005

On 11/27/05, James A. Landau <JJJRLandau at> wrote:
> ---------------------- Information from the mail header
> -----------------------
> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       "James A. Landau" <JJJRLandau at AOL.COM>
> Subject:      Re: Southern English
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> In a message dated Thu, 24 Nov 2005 15:15:25 -0500, Wilson Gray <
> hwgray at GMAIL.COM> writes:
> >
> > >I asked my son (raised in New Jersey since age 2) how to
> > >pronounce  "rodeo".
> > >He said it was /RO dee o/, and /ro DAY o/ "is the street
> in  California."
> > >
> > >        - James A. Landau
> > >
> >
> > Clearly, he's a most precocious child, with knowledge and understanding
> > beyond his years
> >
> My son (who is now 22 and working full-time as a reporter for a weekly
> newspaper in the Philadelphia suburbs) was much flattered by your comment,
> but
> modestly refers you to the movie "Mighty Ducks 2" wherein there apparently
> was a
> discussion of "rodeo".
> Among other reportorial duties he recorded the following thought-provoking
> quote:
> "...we don't believe what we do is simply a charitable benefit for people
> we
> provide housing for.  What we do is ultimately to the benefit of the
> entire
> community.  We feel economic diversity is good for a community "
>                - James A. Landau
> PS: according to today's Parade magazine, inside front cover
> "Q.  Last year, Denzel Washington siad he was planning a film aboutr a
> black
> college professor in Marshall, Tex.  Is it still in the works? ---Peggy
> Gray,
> Aurora, Colo.  [no statement about whether Peggy Gray is related to H.
> WIlson
> Gray]
> A.  Yes.  Washington, 50, will direct and produce _The Great Debaters_,
> about
> Melvin Tolson of WIley College, whose debate team challenged and beat USC,
> the 1935 U.S. champs. (Black schools could not compete officially for the
> title.)"

Nope, not related. The identity of surname is a coincidence. However, I am
pleased as punch to take this occasion to point out that Prof. Tolson and
his family were long-time friends of my family. in fact, his son was our
yard boy. I don't know how widespread this is, but, in our part of the
South, lower-class black adults and their children worked for The Man,
whereas the children of middle-class black families worked for other
middle-class black families. My mother, her sister, and a heap of cousins
and other relatives graduated from Wiley, whose campus is basically across
the backyard from the old family manse.
-Wilson Gray

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