"American finished 10th, behind even Welsh"
Oh My Gosh, I am shocked......
Australians' distinctive accent – known affectionately as "Strine" – was formed in the country's early history by drunken settlers' "alcoholic slur". This shock claim, we hasten to add, comes from Down Under publication The Age, which explains: The Australian alphabet cocktail was spiked by alcohol. Our forefathers regularly …
Wait.. Which American accent? You lot got broken out into Scottish, British, and Welsh; couldn't USAliens at least get South, New England, Texas and Mid-West?
If the survey used the "Standard American" from most non-US movies, then it's the Texas Drawl, which.. yeah, that's ugly.
"....also Northern Irish, which is quite distinctive..."
In my experience, most Anglos can't tell the difference between a 'Norn Iron' accent and a Scots one. So with Irish and Scottish accents both being in the top 3, an Ulster accent must be the ultimate <insert preferred genitalia> magnet.
"...you must mix with some inbred upperclass twits and weirdos if thats the case..."
Well, I didn't presume to enquire about the parentage of, or set an IQ test for, the dozens of English people from all over the place who've asked me, upon hearing my Co. Antrim accent: "What part of Scotland are you from?"
But I'm sure there was some point to your drool-drenched riposte.
I believe, upon serious meditation on the matter, and with due consideration of the social mix of highly distinctive accents sure to be among those co-existing in close proximity at the dawn of the European Occupation of Australia, and with special attention paid to the linguistic foibles of my own country and the regularity of my own accent being incorrectly identified as Australian (a place in which I have never set foot) that - all things considered - I am drawn to the reluctant conclusion that the author of this rather questionable hypothesis is coming the raw prawn.
Those random vowels!
A to I or oy
today-> to die or to doy
also I to ee
As in, "If you're unwell Amy, please..."
-> "if yous seek Amy, please..."
I'd suggest the measure of how much accent you have is how clear you are to all other accents.
Just how awful is the Australian accent?
Well it does very a lot, but I was back in the UK and heard an Essex accent on the radio. I thought that sounded pleasant. <shudder>
"Our forefathers regularly got drunk together and through their frequent interactions unknowingly added an alcoholic slur to our national speech patterns."
And what exactly has changed since those days ? When I lived with the Aussies, and let's not forget the Kiwis ( although their accent is much cleaner), pub night was 5 times a week on the quiet weeks.. And this was no joke...
Years ago on Radio 4, I remember hearing actor Timothy West doing a master class. One tip worked like magic: if you want to do a convincing Australian accent, hold your tongue up so the sides touch your upper back teeth, and speak normally. It takes some practice, but sounds pretty convincing.
I have to point out that you've neglected the vital fact that besides the dropped consonants and vowel changes, we also often run all our words together in rapid-fire machine-gun bursts of speech.
What does real "Strine" sound like?
= "Get out of it you thick bastard, and have a bloody go, you mug!"
I spent half an hour chatting with the barmaid in a local in Norwich before she realized I wasn't "from around here." Her accent was pretty mild too. I suppose my accent is "California," as that's where I grew up, but I've probably retained a bit of Chicago and South African.
And the early pilgrims were mostly from Norfolk if I remember my history.
I'm going to varnish my deck -> I'm going to varnish my dick.
[There is even a video somewhere about this. Yep, Google "varnish my dick"]
Love Australia and NZ but can't help laughing at some of the unintentional transpositions.
Try "shatterproof glass" in a Kiwi accent.
Many, many years ago on our first trip to NZ I was chatting to some ladies and mentioned I was from England. "But you don't have an accent!" they cried. I had to regretfully inform them that they, however, did.
Final point. Why do Aussies finish every sentence on a rising tone as if it is a question?
Fair dinkum, true-blue dinky-di Strine is real bonza, mate! The Sheilas love it!
(Reverting to the Queen's English)
I keep noticing that strange Australian habit of answering questions with "Err, yes-no". I suppose it evolved from the natural evasiveness of a convict culture.
English, itself an amalgam of many languages, perhaps more than most, is quite possibly the poster-child of this form of mutation. If you don't believe me, bicycle around the British Isles, hitting pubs in each county. The old "British Empire"`s far-flung colonies are just an extension of this.
On the bright-side, we can all still communicate. Which is all that really matters.
If you don't like this reality ... well, all I can say is that I feel sorry for you.
Vive la différence!
"Strine." I love that word. I wish I'd known that word back when I was running a tabletop game of Eclipse Phase, and I introduced an Australian-born wilderness specialist who would teach my players (all but one of whom had lived all of their lives either in space, or in big cities and then in space,) wilderness skills.
They accused him of exaggerating the accent, if not faking it entirely. He asked them who you'd be more likely to listen to teaching you rough-and-tumble wilderness survival skills: David Attenborough, or a man who sounds like he's actually wrestled a crocodile by choice, for fun.
(The dark secret? He wasn't faking the accent at all. Playing it up a bit maybe, but not at all faking. He really was what he claimed to be, one of the last bushwhackers alive.)
I guess the point is... Hey, it's not all bad. A strine may not make you sound terribly booksmart (though it still sounds moreso than a thick southern drawl,) but it makes you sound wilderness smart. :)
Now if you look at Oz TV you see that they speak with a fixed smile, even when talking of something terrible, like losing the ashes, This smile or grimace comes from so much sun they had to screw their face up to keep out the glare since the first ships. It is extra bright here, and the driest place. Now you try it, screw your face up, you develop that wide mouth. Now talk and lo! You speak strine.
Then add the XXXX
you got the cause wrong: its really that the sun is so hot it dries the skin to shrunken leather.
If you take a look at an old Australian who's not had a facelift you'll see a remarkable resemblance to a headhunters shrunken head (even down to the depleted cranium size)
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