So my parents are from Manhattan, born and raised. Growing up, I never heard that stereotypical New York accent when they spoke, until one day when it was brought to my attention. Here are a few examples that make me question my own observational skills during the first 20 years of my life:
- My mom recently asked me if I have ever played “strip poke ah”. It turns out she was referring to the promiscuous card game, strip poker, not an erotic version of the well-known Czech dance. (side note: not sure why my mom wanted to hear an answer to that question anyway)
- My older sister had a physical therapist named “Ja Rod”. It is likely that his name was just, Gerard, but I will never know for sure.
- The monetary amount of $5.00 sounds like an inspiration latin phrase,”fi dollis”.
- More money math: What is 20+20? “fawdee”
- A polite greeting can be condensed into one quickly uttered word, “hihowayou”
- What do you call beverages such as Budweiser, Corona, and PBR? “Beeuh”
- “Selsa” and “Salsa”: a sugar-free carbonated beverage versus a mild/medium/hot Mexican dip that requires tortilla chips. I usually had to listen closely to see which one I was supposed to get from the garage fridge.
- Last but not least (this list will be extended in time), the great city of “New Yawk”
I would like to thank one of my closest friends for pointing out my mother and father’s accents, making me painfully aware of the ways in which they pronounce all words. It is very much appreciated. Very much.