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March 6, 2012
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As an American, I am appalled by many of the (what I call) misspellings and/or mis-pronunciations of words. My 6th grade elementary teacher, Miss Echols, was a formidable woman, who hated slang of every form. It was she who instilled a love for the English language in many of us (or a hate!). Where I grew up, there was a very strong Colonial English heritage, so many of the pronunciations and spellings remained long after the official "American" versions changed. Hence, I grew up spelling gray as g-r-e-y. My spell-checker didn't like that spelling, so I amended it. I also spell Savior S-a-v-i-o-u-r. Same story. So, not all us 'Americans' approve of how things are going on here. (Oh, and in my own small rebellious way, though the new dictionaries have dropped the middle 'e', I still spell j-u-d-g-e-m-e-n-t the old-fashioned way.) As for an entire nation using silent U's or not using them at all - my husband's family is Canadian, and they have a few quirky pronunciations and spellings of their own!
I'm from Central Virginia, and we say "Aint" - yep, just like the slang word "ain't". Ai rhyming with hay. Sorry, professor, but your long treatise of proper pronunciation completely omitted the matter of dialect! :-) Aint Kay, Aint Joyce. And yes, we call them Aint or Uncle where I'm from because it's a term of respect. Oh, just FYI, my father and uncle pronounced house "hosse" and about "aboot". The "ou" came out sounding more like they started to say 'ow' but changed their mind and said 'oh' - almost a diphthong, but not quite. But then they and their family were all of Scottish descent, so who could blame them? Oh, and I live in a town called Staunton, but it's pronounced "Stan-tun". Drives the telemarketers crazy!!
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