Friday, May 16, 2008

Accentuate the positive

So... New England accents.
There are lots of different ones. For the best examples in films, see The Depahtid and The Russians a-Comin, the Russians a-Comin.
Other New Englanders do not generally think I have too much of a New England accent.
Southerners generally think I talk like a Yankee. I have no problem with that. I did not, in fact, know that "Yankee" was considered a pejorative term in the south until a well-meaning southerner called me one and then apologized.

But here's the thing: Due to years and years of living in New England, I somehow just discovered yestiddy that "pejorative" is not, in fact, "perjorative." God bless spell-check.

8 comments:

mike said...

Re: "I did not, in fact, know that "Yankee" was considered a pejorative term in the south..."


Only since, like, 1860. There was some unpleasantness...

bzzzzgrrrl said...

That is, "I did not, in fact, know that "Yankee" was still considered a pejorative term in the south."
Because, you know, many people have gotten over that unpleasantness to some degree in the last 150 years.

Joe Coombs said...

From a phone interview with a local while working at a paper in Gainesville, FL, several years ago:

Local: "I don't think I like the tone uh these questions. . .by the way, where you from, boy?"

Me: "Just outside of Haaaatfuhd, Connecticut."

Local: "Uhhhh-HUH.. . I thought so. . .a Yankee."
(CLICK)

bzzzzgrrrl said...

Joe coombs, is it safe to say that you are pretty much over the Civil War?

Cousin Mouse said...

The War of Northern Aggression, you mean?

Our common grandmother, who kept pictures on the wall* of Stonewall Jackson, Jefferson Davis, and distant cousin Robert E. Lee, wasn't quite over it.

I once revealed my blood relation to Cousin Bob, as I like to call him, in 3rd or 4th grade for which an outraged classmate called me a "communist!"

-Cousin Mouse

*not a wall most visitors would see.

bzzzzgrrrl said...

Our common grandmother would be 109 years old. I think that's different.
But my father did say recently about this Louisiana-raised, Virginia-familied grandmother that she was in her teens before she realized "damnYankee" was two words. Mind you, she lived in the north for the last 70 years of her life.

mike said...

Robert E. Lee was a communist? 'Scuse me while I edit Wikipedia...

Kay Bailey said...

I married a Yankee in Texas. And one of my favorite things from the wedding was having all these people DRIVE down from Illinois to East Texas. Tee hee. I made all the Yankees come to Texas. Tee hee!