You Don’t Have An Accent, the Rest of the World Does


I believe all of us at some point and time in our lives have been asked by an out of Towner to repeat words such as milk, wash, eggs, etc. over and over so they can have a giggle fit over our apparent accents, or tell us that we talk funny and give us a sideways glance.

It is in our true nature as Clevelanders to become completely offended or think it ludicrous that we acquire an accent. “We’re from the Midwest, everyone sounds just like us!” is the most common reply you’re likely to hear. It is true that most newscasters and actors are taught to speak with a Midwestern accent, but this does not conceal the fact that our pronunciation of certain words differs from that of the socially acceptable norm. For instance, our vowel’s are usually pronounced longer than they need to be, we add the “AH” factor (mom = mAHm, god = gAHd, doctor = dAHcter). Even still, we believe that we are free from regional characteristics involving our dialect.

Perhaps when you break down a normal Cleveland sentence and realize you’ve used one to many prepositions you’ll understand what the rest of the world is talking about… “I’m going over to the Gund Arena” (for the record, I will never refer to it as the “Q” which goes along with my earlier post about the Jake, but that’s for another day) or “Where are you guys at?” Now do you see?

It’s quite an eye opener once you say a sentence, break it down and realize that we are not the only people in the world that do not have an accent. We do, but for the sake of being a Cleveland native, WE DON’T HAVE ACCENTS! And there is nothing anyone can say that will change my, or anyone’s mind. Pop will always be considered a soft drink, the “AH” will always be there, and we will never refer to Cincinnati (Cincinnatt-E) as Cincinatt-UH. Mary, merry and marry will always be pronounced the same, along with whine and wine, and that’s how it will stay because we are Clevelanders and it’s our right. The Great Lakes Accent will never die!

~ by carluhhcouture on November 18, 2009.

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