19 May 2011

"L" in Salmon, "R" in Wash

My favorite argument with my husband is word pronounciation.

Husband:  "What's for dinner?"

Me:  "Salmon (with the "L" pronounced)."

Husband:  "Sa-min.  Say it with me, Sa-min."

Me:  "Like Caramel?  There are two a's and an e in Caramel.  So you pronounce them."

Husband:  "No, you don't.  It's Caramel (he pronounces it as Carmul, I have no idea why)."

Me:  "Whatever.  You say it the wrong way, I say it the way it's spelled."

More discussion about how to pronounce the word "Salmon", including my stating that Worcestershire sauce can be pronounced with all the letters since we do not spell British English but American English.

Finally, I throw up my hands and tell him to pronounce "Wash".

Husband:  "It's Wash. (pronounced Warsh)"

Sometimes, to prove the point further, I ask him to say the word "Water".

Husband:  "It's Water (pronounced Warter)!  What's your point?"

I walk away, knowing I win my argument.

These are the arguments we have in my bilingual, bicultural household.  I have to wonder whether others have such arguments.


Bill said...

my wife kicks my tail in English grammar and spelling. She'll walk me around the block tarred and feathered. To get back at her, I'll ask her the meaning of an old-timey esoteric American or British idiom, or break out an SAT word like bucolic. Sadly, I'm running out of idioms/words she doesn't know.

Unknown said...

Bill, when I posted this, I was hoping you would read it! lol So we are NOT the only couple having conversations like this. :D

Petits Choux said...

Love it! Is he from MD/VA? That's so common around here! You've got to get rid of the L in salmon tho :)

VickiB said...

Forget bicultural...we have these arguments all the time about Russian words. Apparently, the fact that husband was born in OMGMOSCOW means his vocab is more elite and better than mine, and I've made up 10-15% of my Russian vocab.

Anonymous said...

I am an American living in England and I can confirm that it really depends where you are as to how things are said, and we are all just culturally confused as expats!

Shell said...

We have these- just being from different parts of the country!

Rachel said...

Ah warsh, I haven't heard that in ages! Such midwestern pronunciation, makes me a tad homesick.

As a yankee in Britain, I mispronounce just about everything :)

Grumpy Grateful Mom said...

You guys are hilarious! It's definitely Q-pon, not coo--pon.

Andrea said...

Samun, Wusstersher, ka-ra-mil, I know exactly where you are coming from! I grew up with german/british parents who had spent a lot of time in Africa, and so I have a nice mix of odd pronounciations -like 'won't - which Australians pronounce 'woant' (like own with an extra w and t) and I pronounce 'Wohnt' where the o is like in 'oh'....anyway, I always get hell for it.

My approach is, when they are words from a foreign language I try hard to pronounce them as they would be in that country, and when they are english words...I just do it my own way!