Tuesday, October 19, 2004

Twang

Egads...he sounds so...American.

It's the reaction I've had a couple of times this week when listening to people on the other side of the pond.

First there was the Skype experiment with a longtime American friend of mine - Frode Odegard. We downloaded the program and fiddled with buttons until sound came out...then, much to my surprise* an American-accented voice was saying: "Monica, can you hear me?"

* I don't really know why, we've spoken on the phone before, a long time ago.

Why, yes, yes I could - but who was this? Frode grew up in Sweden and understands Monty Python. He should have well-rounded vowels. Who was this guy pronouncing his 'r's all funny?

Then there's the new section that Rory has on Neopoleon.com with sound feeds of interesting anecdotes. I dutifully clicked the link and my speakers sprang to life, Rory's introduction sounding through my study in...in American.

I'm so used to reading Frode's emails and to reading Rory's words, applying the little voice in my mind (which is British-accented according to Aussies and Aussie-accented according to Brits, so some amalgam of the two, I suppose) that hearing what the two of them actually sound like was a shock. It was all wrong.

It'll be interesting to travel to the States one of these days - I have so many friends and acquaintances that I keep in touch with through my blog, email and postcards that I imagine it will be a trip of double-takes and me giving funny looks to people the moment that they open their mouths.

M


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