Kevin Brennan Writes About What It's Like

The view from the distant past…

One thing I notice as I get older is that things change in subtle ways. Aside from technology, a lot of everyday existence now is pretty much the same as it was in the ’60s, when I was a kid. But some things are different, and I can’t tell when the change came.

When did people start saying “stew-dent” for student? Why are they hyper-pronouncing the second syllable hard consonants these days? “Gar-den,” “hid-den,” “did-dint”? In my day (cue Dana Carvey’s Grumpy Old Man) we said these words in a more relaxed, casual way, something like stud’nt, hid’n, and did’nt. Who started teaching the youngsters to speak like exchange stew-dents aping Rosetta Stone lessons? And why?

I know, I know. English is a living, even mercurial language and it’s changing all the time. But I just want to know when the memo went out and how come there wasn’t a movement that said, “No!”

I’m a refusenik. Sorry, but I will not speak like a robot.

No matter how old it makes me seem…

7 comments on “The view from the distant past…

  1. John W. Howell
    January 15, 2015

    In my day, we didn’t have internet, cell phones or electronic anything. When you went home from work you were home. Yeah maybe once in a blue moon the boss woud ask you to work late, but we liked it.

  2. ericjbaker
    January 16, 2015

    i was expecting something far more curmudgeonly when I read the first line.

  3. 1WriteWay
    January 17, 2015

    Come to the south … people speak differently here. The transplants all sound like they’re from the midwest (even my northern accent has flattened out), but the born and raised Southerners, well, it’s interesting 😉 I’m not saying they’re wrong (please no hate mail). I’m just sayin’, y’all hear me?

    • Kevin Brennan
      January 17, 2015

      Interesting, because when I go back to the midwest to visit family, everyone sounds southern to me. Anyway, I think this new thing is different from dialect; it’s more like kids are being taught to speak this way or they’re imitating someone I don’t know.


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This entry was posted on January 15, 2015 by in Et alia and tagged .
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