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Lost in Translation

August 30th, 2013 · No Comments

I realize I have lived in the south now for over 16 years. You’d think I would have tweeked my ears enough to decipher the southern drawl by now, but there are some accent variations and pronunciations that I will never wrap my head around. For example, I’ve worked for my employer for 7 years and still, every time he says the word “oil”, I think he said the word “all”.  “So…what all are you changing in your car again?”

Recently, I spoke with a client on the telephone and (bless his heart) he’s from West Blocton, Alabama. Slightly south and west of metro Birmingham, West Blocton is Alabama’s version of tornado alley. Wide open fields, cows, tractors, and a narrow two lane highway running smack through the middle. In a sense; Kansas without the charm.

I made that poor man repeat himself so many times that I was so frustrated I began to just spell out every word for clarity. Then I attempted to transcribe said conversation into a memo for the file. I am certain there is no such person on this planet that goes by the name “Ow – Nee”, nor is there any town named “Buxell” and I still have no idea what a “fire plug” is? Could you imagine me as a court reporter? Hilarious!

Ok, after some discussion and a quick Google search this is what I have discovered: The woman’s name is Onnie, the town is called Bucksville and a fire plug is really a fire hydrant.

Whatever. I have learned that in Alabama, no matter what your “language”,  it’s finally football season. Roll Tide!

Tags: Adventures

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