Sunday, May 23, 2010

You Talk Pretty

See Joel.
See Joel jump.
Jump, Joel, Jump.

I met Joel in April at General Conference when I went with Bryce. He was visiting from Canada. He is a genuinely awesome guy! Molly and I had no idea when we met Joel, who we so endearingly nicknamed The Irritated One, how awesome he is. I think sometimes we unintentionally embarrass him, or just make him a little uncomfortable. Because Joel speaks in the most beautiful way. So we just tell him to talk. Not to us or with us, just at us so we can listen. It's like listening to a song. When we tell him this, he replies, "I don't have an accent!" (in his oh so pretty accent)

We knew he had an accent, but when he asked how the way he said things was different from the way we said them, we just couldn't explain it! Our response to that question usually sounded something like this, "I don't know how its different, it just is! Please keep talking."

Today in church, an Elder from Canada was speaking. I thought nothing of it until I heard him speak. I was pretty captivated by what he was saying and then I realized it was the accent! Joel's accent.
I figured out how it's different! (as soon as I figured it out, I thought, "I need to call Joel!")

So, I did.
I started off by asking him to tell me about his day and church and what not, just to keep him talking. (because I like listening to him talk) Then, I explained to him the answer to his question.
What is the difference between how he says things and how we do?

Here it is.
In America, we hate speech impediments. So, when we are being taught to speak, we are taught to enunciate carefully. Our consonants become hard and we tend to speak very sharply and clearly in order to be understood.
When Joel speaks, letters become softer. The words seem rounder and to flow more smoothly. Its so much more pleasant and gentle when entering my cerebellum.

It's like comparing German and French.

He tells me I'm silly and that this is ridiculous.
I don't care. As long he tells it to me in that pretty way of his.

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