Fleeting Friday Thoughts

I'm not in the mood to be online, really, but I am, anyway, because an online friend was dangling the prospect of being the first to read one of his poems in front of me like the proverbial carrot.

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I re-colored my hair earlier, because in warm weather it grows incredibly fast and I could see roots already. I'd been planning to dye it back to it's natural dark-dark brown, and then have Brian do highlights, but there was a dye called “Ginger Spice” or “Spicy Ginger” that was the next shade down from Beyond Cherry (which I've written about before), and so I bought it. And used it. On my hair, it looked like carrot juice during the application stage. Now that it's dry it's kind of like iced tea with lemon. Lighter and more orangey than I really wanted. But I kind of like it.

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The line “and so I bought it” is leftover from a scene I did in a competition in high school. I don't remember the name of the play – it might have been a Jules Pfeifer thing – but the scene was a woman telling her husband about how he never listens and then rambling about how she bought a new hat. It's essentially a monologue, punctuated by “Yes dear” “No dear.” “Beige, you said beige”. Stereotypical husband lines. We didn't win. The group from Long Beach who did a bit from Greater Tuna won.

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We did win the following year, with a scene from “Wally's Cafe,” where I got to use my New Jersey accent, and the judges said, “We liked that it was a New Jersey accent and not Brooklyn.” There's a definite difference.

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Most of the New Jersey in my voice is fake, something I do to keep myself from developing a nasal Marin-county sound, or falling into my husband's midwestern thing of not knowing that 'pin' and 'pen' and 'git' and 'get' are disctinct sounds. Some of it is real, especially when I'm tired. Or certain words. For example, I say “Flarida” instead of “Florida,” when I don't pay attention, and I tend to say “harrible” for “horrible,” when I'm tired.

The irony of this is that when my cousin Caterina (Cathy) was here for my grandmother's funeral last year, her accent, which is much coarser than mine ever was, really annoyed me. She tends to say 'wid' instead of 'with'. Example: when she was asking to borrow a guitar for the Mass we did (she played, I sang, it was cool – for a funeral mass) she said “I need one wid-a Capo on it.”

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I have perfect pitch and I'm a natural mimic. This means that if I speak with you long enough, I will eventually incorporate your speech patterns into mine. I don't do it consciously, and it is not mockery. It just is. My normal, un-selfconcious speech has traces of the pseudo-Canadian accent heard in the upper midwest (example “Minne-soh-ta”) the afore-mentioned NJ, and a little bit of Louisiana twang from my family there.

Despite this, some regionalisms really bother me. Specifically, I hate when people pronounce the 't' in 'often'. Yes. This is irrational.

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I find that my audio mimickry leaks over into text-based roleplay – and I'm constantly paranoid that someone will accuse me of 'stealing' their style, and I won't have realized I'm doing it.

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This entry, accompanied by back-to-back eps of Whose Line Is It Anyway? has made me really wistful for theatre. *sigh*

CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 Fleeting Friday Thoughts by Melissa Bartell is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.