You say “tomato”, I say “tuhmatuh”

This is likely to be one of the most boring blog entries in the history of the internet. So go ahead and skip it if you have anything at all else to do. To start off, I notice that almost everyone in the country besides me pronounces the word “lawyer,” “loyer.” I pronounce it “lawyer,” which Andy thinks is funny for some reason. I tell him that he has no respect for the loy.
If you are from Nebraska:
the “ee” sound in the middle of a word becomes “i.” Thus, the word “meal” becomes “mill.” “Meal deal” is likewise pronounced “mill dill,” which makes me giggle.
the “ay” sound in the middle of a word becomes “eh.” Hence, “mail” becomes “mel.”
if you are from central Nebraska, an “r” is sometimes placed in the middle of a word: “wash” is pronounced “warsh.”
The name of the town “Norfolk” is pronounced “Norfork.” Beatrice, Nebraska, is “bee-AT-rice.”
If you are from Kansas:
final vowels, and sometimes other vowels, become a schwa. “Missouri” is pronounced “Muzzeruh,” “tomato” is “tuhmatuh.”
a final “ay” sound, on the other hand, becomes “ee,” notably in the days of the week: Sundy, Mondy, Tuesdy, and so on.
vowels occurring in the middle of words frequently aren’t pronounced, and are replaced with a brief pause: “veteran” is “vet-ran.”
Kansas City is “Kans City,” for whatever reason.
In the Northeast:
People make fun of me for calling sweetened carbonated beverages “pop” and pronouncing “wolf,” “woof.” Sticks and stones…
In Boston, you don’t pronounce a final letter “r,” so that Mister is pronounced Mistuh. But if a word ends in a vowel, you add an “r,” so that “Lisa” would be “Liser.” According to my freshman roommate who was from Boston, Bostonians do not elide “r”s in the middle of words, as in “attorney,” so if you hear somebody pronounce it “attuhney” you know they are faking the accent. I don’t know if that’s true, but Tom Hanks did it in the movie “Catch Me If You Can.”
The town of Calais, Maine, is pronounced “Callous.” Bangor is pronounced “Bang-gor,” with a hard “g.”
In Chicago:
A co-worker of mine once told me that her new apartment was not on a “mean street.” It took me a while to realize she meant “main street.”

2 Responses to “You say “tomato”, I say “tuhmatuh””

  1. Adam says:

    `Pop’ is a verb. Soda is a beverage. I’m ‘from’ the West coast.
    I had class with someone at Calvin who was from Boston (Bouhston) and (getting crass here) pronounced ‘fart’ ‘faht’. Is there a rule for that?
    (The only reason I know that tidbit is because he came into class one day and asked if ‘Did somebody faht in heyuh?’

  2. JAJA says:


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