September — what can one say? Sept 23, 2020 10:32:08 GMT
Post by Verbivore on Sept 23, 2020 10:32:08 GMT
And I think I shall end my slowth and take out my rath on a ze[e]bra of indeterminate colour.
The “American-ness” of zee-bra is uncomfortable to me (the Aussie counter-cultural counter cringe?), even grating on the ear. Yet Attenborough is one of my few heroes and there’s an urge to emulate him.
I realised yesterday that I’d said roth in conversation (wrath and vengeance was my turn of phrase), so perhaps that remnant vestige of my American-evangelical background is on its last legs, extinctivating, in my speech.*
Interesting how we change our speech over time.
* WARNING: Anecdote (child safe)
As a child (even well pre-teen years), I was often asked when met by new people, "What part of London / New Zealand are you from?" I'd never been farther than 100 miles from my rural hometown in eastern AU.
While conscious of speaking very differently from my (adoptive) parents, the "rellos", and their circles, I had no idea who might have been my speech model. Pater and Mater were dairy-farmer battlers. They spoke of sawlt (salt), dawg (dog), 'eifer (heifer) ... they didn't quite drawl but their agrarian roots showed in speech.
At age 42 I found my birth mother and the question was answered: Pitch aside, we spoke identically – even down to a broad and often specialist vocabulary. 42 as The Meaning of Life took on deeper significance when that riddle was solved. I must have listened closely while in the womb, and Mum must have chatted a lot.
Nature? Nurture? Certainly 15+ years of constant "farmer-speak" in my immediate environment failed to nurture my "natural" (probably actually early nurture) speech out of me.