Thursday, August 07, 2008

More pronounced

I was watching Friends tonight and one of the characters said something about emus. Except the Friend in question didn't say "emus" they said "e-moos", like they were talking about some kind of new-fangled techno-bovine. I was expecting the laugh track to erupt with insincere hilarity - I mean, e-moos, really? - but the laughter remained canned until the next time Chandler said something sarcastic. Then: everybody whooped.

Is this for serious? Do Americans really say "e-moos"? W, as the kids say, tf?


Richard said...

Probably, yes.

I don't personally recall saying the word before, but when I see it in print, I read it in my mind as "e-moo". I never looked it up before today. Oops!

lucy said...

They also say too-na instead of tuna and doo-ty instead of duty.
And bay-ta and day-ta instead of beta and data.

Tim said...

I say bay-ta and sometimes day-ta, although the latter is mostly due to watching too much Star Trek: The Next Generation as a teen.

I should point out that if Americans do say e-moo then I'm all for it. National and regional pronunciation idiosyncrasies are all to the good. (eg. Apparently I've been saying "Beijing" incorrectly, along with the rest of Australia, and I, along with the rest of Australia, am probably not about to change my ways.) In the case of "emus" I suppose I had never heard an American say the word before.

Ben.H said...

Don't get me started on how they pronounce "aluminium".

Richard said...

re: "aluminium". It's not a pronunciation thing. The spelling was changed, admittedly arbitrarily, and in this case pronunciation followed spelling.