More about me...
Read them as well:
2006-02-06 - 8:21 a.m.
Let's Cawl the Whole Thing Awwf
I guess I like the results of the following (though I have no idea where Dixie and Upper Midwest influences come from).
Yankee. I like that, even though I sometimes lament the fact that I've expunged most Jerseyisms in my everyday speech in favor of "general American". I wish sometimes that I had retained some kind of more distinctive twang to my speech (though it would never be what you're imagining when New Jersey comes to mind -- I absolutely HATE those people who try to imitate some kind of Jersey accent that they think they picked up from movies and television. Think a gutter version of Joe Pesci or something). And people who think they're being witty when they say, "Oh, you're from Joisey," should just be eviscerated on the spot -- to me that's some kind of Bronx dialect or something; I have never, ever heard anyone I personally know utter such a thing.
For whatever reasons, I tend to turn whatever accent I have [see here for possible approximation?] on and off. It definitely gets strong when I'm back in Mercer County for a visit. I'm very aware of how I sound. "Code switching" is my hobby, if you want to call it that. I tend to be a natural mimic and find myself conforming to whomever I'm around. Throw me in with a group of southerners, or overhear my conversations with African American friends, and you might just find it silly the way I do carry on. Sometimes I'm truly afraid that it might seem mockingly insulting, but whatever -- imitation is, in these cases, the sincerest form of flattery. Or in this case, it's a pseudoscientific interest: I want to understand how these people manipulate their mouths to make the sounds they do, and how their phonetics, syntax, and lexis all fit together.
For those so inclined, see the following, which is a much more detailed and interesting survey:
= = = = = = = = = = =