The Langauge Barrier

A message for our American readers…

I’ve known my Brit now for a little over 9 months. We’ve been married for just over 3. And as is to be expected in such mad-dashed affairs, some differences are only now beginning to surface. I’m sure we can work through them, given time and our commitment to one another. But it really is a challenge.

For example, Stuart believes I have no energy whatsoever because I’m always asking for the “restroom”.

“Another nap, dahling?”

Whereas Stuart made a fine Southern lady in Florida blush when he said he was looking for the toilet.

The other day, driving to the library, I pointed at the sky where a beautiful hawk was soaring, “Look at the hawk!”

Stuart sat there for a moment, blank, and then looked at the sky. The hawk was gone. Turns out, he had no idea what I was saying. You see, the British have a funny way of pronouncing common English words.

“Eh-oh, you mean Hork!”


And this morning, when he asked me if I wanted the avocado on the counter or if he could have “hah-f” with his “yawg-et,” I had to suppress a giggle.

When I said I was hot, he said, “You certainly are!” Oh, but that’s not the weird part. He said, “Well no wonder with that polo neck.”

“Polar neck? I don’t get it. This is a turtle neck, ya know, cuz it’s like a turtle! What do polar bears have to do with it?”

“No, polo neck. Not polo neck.”

“Oh, okay, honey. Thanks for clearing that up.”

When he asked me to open my boot, I took off my shoe. Turns out he wanted to put the laptop in the trunk.

When shopping for slippers, when I said, “These blue ones are nice,” he replied, “I prefer the cah-key.”

“What does the car key have to do with it?”

Turns out he meant khaki…ya know…the color. Kak-ee.

I won’t EVEN get into their funny spellings…favourite, colour, and tyre. Such strange behaviour!

And now something for our British readers:

I love my wife; I really do. So I’m doing everything I can to accept the fact that she’s a foreigner. She’s bound to make mistakes with the language. I should just exercise my stiff upper lip and deal with it.

But when I’m painting and I ask her opinion of the contrast, why does she say, “Oh, you mean the contraast!”

And why when I ask if she wants some more apricot juice does she say “appricot” juice?

Funny little country, America. It was awfully good of us to give it to the Americans. Though I dare say, we should have stayed a little longer and made sure they spoke the language first!

(Please do not deploy assassins. It’s only humour…or humor as my wife insists!)


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