Wednesday, April 25, 2012
There was silence on the line.
'Hello?' I said back into the phone.
'What did you just say? I didn't get half of that.' She burst out laughing and said, 'You're a Limey now!'
Oh, the offense, or should I say offence! I quickly translated: Cate, just throw it in the garbage can if you think it's crap. And no more candy, we'll be eating soon. Don't be a brat or no popsicle for dessert.'
Blimey indeed! My daughter has a right proper British accent. She goes to school with British children and this is her talk. My husband, the Kiwi, is more British than American so he speaks like this as well. So it's easier for me to speak their Queen's English than it is for me to speak Obama's English.
But now I find myself saying 'flat' instead of 'apartment', 'mobile' instead of 'cell phone', 'cash point' instead of 'ATM', 'rubbish' instead of 'garbage', 'pudding' instead of 'dessert' and on and on. It cant' be helped.
And you know what - British English sounds so much nicer (for the most part). So I like it. But then there are the parts I don't like: 'Toilet' instead of 'bathroom' or restroom' (that's the prudish American in me) for example.
Either way, I'm quite comfortable with my British morphing. When we do go back to the USA I'm sure I'll return to my louder, brasher twang. And that's okay too.
I was amused by Nappy Valley and her assessment of having to tweak her language to fit into America. Read her post here. I feel her pain - it's the same language, just different country. We're just trying to fit in.