My thoughts & Interests, Work & Life

Dealing with english accent…

With people from different countries residing together, English is the common language here.As long you do not know Arabic, Chinese, Philippini and the variety of Indian languages (Hindi/ Malayalam/ Telugu/ Tamil/ Bengali ….), you have to stick to English. Fortunately CUSAT has influenced my Hindi/Bengali skills. Needless to say, Chennai IT companies have brimfully brilliant Telugus,Tamil and mallus 🙂 🙂 So I can deal with Indian languages. But when the ones I meet do not know any of these as much as I do not know theirs, we choose English. The mother tongue influence on English would end up confusing most of the time.

After enrolling for driver’s license test, I had to clear a theory paper which wasn’t a big deal at all. Anyone would get through. So after the exam, I went to the invigilator to collect my result, and he said, “You fail”.WHAT??? No way. I look at him again and see an impatient him shouting, “You fail. Please collect your belongings and leave.Next in queue…”.I collect my mobile and then he hands over the result along with my file which says I have only 2 wrong answers, and I realize he said, “Your FILE”.What a relief..

Neighbour Egyptian anty is fond of Pari. She mixes Arabic and English together to help us understand better,but ahem… Being my mother’s age,we give her due respect and visit whenever possible. Pari is her adorable darling. During one such visits she asked “Ul-Zatayam baby crying, Why?”.I stood perplexed trying to figure out Ul-Zatayam, while her hands went round and round to comprehend, repeating “Ul-Zatayam,Ul-Zatayam”..  All the while at her home, I was trying to decipher Ul-Zatayam, when she asked, “How are your parents – Fazer,Mazer?”. So ‘Z’ was for ‘th’ and then it suddenly struck. Ul-Zatayam, Ul tha tayam – All the time. “All the time baby crying, why?”.Poor thing!!

So we have to learn and deal with not only British English and American English,but also Chinese English,Philippino English (though I cannot tell who belongs to which country,I can tell after they talk),Arabic English,Egyptian English,Turkish English etc etc… But that’s all fine. Mother tongue gets mixed up with foriegn languages.Natural.

But sometimes people create the fake English accent and totally twist my senses. Long back in mid 2005, when we were at Brighton, our team planned for a Swiss trip. Exactly on the day before the trip,London bomb blasts happened and therefore heavy police checking prevailed at all airports. After landing at —— airport, a police man asked my colleague why we were visiting Swiss, and my colleague answered with heavily accented English. “We are tourists, sir”. His Tamil and English emphasized the word ‘tourist’ too much that the police man asked again. “What terrorist?” :- ) 🙂 There stood our horrified colleague,but oh!! What a lovely joke it was for us. From then till now (6 yrs) he is been referred to as Terrorist 🙂 🙂


18 thoughts on “Dealing with english accent…”

  1. firsttttt ..

    all you need is someone from a indian call centre to call.. it is hilarious with there FAKE ACCENT.. I put my fone on speaker EVERY TIme they call and we have a good hearty laugh..

    🙂 Made me smile the little tit bits in the post .. he he he

    and fastest comment yayyyyyyyyyyyy

    1. U r always fast,in almost every blog i visit.. great encouragement.. and oh!!fake accent sometimes really gets on my nerves..few of my x colleagues thought that speaking US English would impress clients, and my god….

    1. I dint know u r going US. From Infy or what? Good luck my friend and be in touch. Well, This lady is always of good intentions,and so i thought over it and finally got it right…But every time I go there somethg like this happens..

  2. That sure was funny.. I remember the first time our company went in for an intenration project.. It involved a team from the US, one from Argentina, one from Malaysia and one from India. It was a riot of humour as we were struggling to understand what eveyr other person was speaking during the calls!

  3. LOL! You figured out Ul-Zatayam – that is impressive 🙂 I know that accent though 🙂 Here, I have come across all sorts of accents. Scottish is sometimes totally un-understandable! You sometimes have to guess at what they are saying.. Using Z instead of th – yes, that is common amongst people from Africa. It is fun, though, isn’t it:) It is almost like we start understanding diff languages 🙂

    LOL @ ‘Terrorist’ 🙂

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