Date: Sun, 22 Oct 1995 21:35:32 EDT
From: Larry Horn LHORN[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]YALEVM.CIS.YALE.EDU
Instead of: I forgot my straw. I've heard: I forgot my skraw.
also other words beginning in str substituting the skr; skreet, etc.
So you're hearing [skr-] in these clusters? This seems to be related to
a phenomenon I think we talked about here a year or so ago (or maybe it was on
Linguist?) in which the [s] is palatalized, yielding something like 'shtreet'
in the clusters you cite. This palatalization seems to be especially frequent
among Long Islanders, particularly those with Italian surnames. Seriously.
Does anyone on the list know anybody who discusses either this palatalization
Marla's velarization in these str- initial clusters? (At least the former
development isn't too surprising, since the -tr- is or can be itself somewhat
palatalized in many idiolects, including my own; but motivation isn't reality
for most speakers.)