Mitchif vs. French vs. English

Jeffrey Kopp jeffkopp at TELEPORT.COM
Fri Mar 12 05:21:39 UTC 1999

On Sat, 6 Mar 1999 09:24:26 -0800, you wrote:

>On Sat, 6 Mar 1999 07:59:24 -0400 The McDonald Family <mcdonald at ISN.NET>
>>>I've got a friend at church, born and raised in Oregon and a lifelong
>NW USA >>resident, about my age, of mixed Scottish and Chehalis ancestry,
>who has a slight >>Scottish burr in his speech; and it gets more marked
>when he goes to the Highland >>Games.
>>I can definitely believe that.
>[lurk mode OFF]
>Well, you know,  *I'm* Pacific Northwet born and raised <she says,
>puffing her gills up self-importantly> and after spending a mere 8 months
>around folks from south western Texas, I came home with a Texas twang
>that *still* creeps into my speech from time to time and it's been 18
>years.  And, if I'm around *any* one with the slightest accent, I pick it
>up *that* fast.  I've heard it said that this is common because folks in
>the NW US speak Broadcast English.

Well (NW native myself), during my three years in S.E. Mass., I felt
that toward the end I was getting a hint of an accent, but nobody
else seemed to hear it.  I think it begins with trying to pronounce
local place names as the locals do.  They could follow my speech just
fine (as we are blessed with "broadcast English"), but mangling a
familiar local place-name would often cause momentary consternation,
if not confusion.  (Or occasionally derision, as in the case of the
newcomer who pronounces "Worcester" in full.)

I suspect that a southern accent is more quickly "contagious" because
it also has a distinctive (and seductive) rhythm.

(Is "North-wet" a typo or a pun?  I love it.  Yes, we probably need
gills here.)



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