Date: Thu, 25 Jul 1996 05:32:38 -0400
From: "M. Lynne Murphy" 104LYN[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]MUSE.ARTS.WITS.AC.ZA
Subject: Re: Pinning Down A Region
-- Canadians DO say eh.
and so do at least some parts of u.s. near canada. i never realized
i said it til i moved to massachusetts and they made fun of me.
one nice thing about living in south africa is that here they have
the same thing, but it's pronounced 'hey', so there's one thing that
south africans don't make fun of me for.
a lot of people here insist that i don't speak like an american, but
like a canadian. i don't think that this is because they hear my
'eh's, but because non-americans seem to think that all americans
talk like texans or georgians or something (not to say these are the
same, but that they sound "american" to foreigners, while other
regional accents don't). considering how much american tv they get
here (CNN, dan rather, seinfeld, roseanne, star trek), i can't
understand why the understanding of "american" accents isn't
broader. (of course, there are plenty of people who immediately know
i'm american. it's just that so many others are surprised that
interests me. of course, non-native speakers of english have totally
different ideas about english varieties. afrikaners often think
i'm german, though i'm told i pronounce afrikaans with a dutch
accent--i speak neither.)
either i've got to get a life, or life is ads-l.