• Culture and Entertainment

    What I Watched August 2020

    In July I forgot to include Miss Marple: The Moving Finger. The modern one, with James D’Arcy, which is why I watched it. It was one of my favorite Agatha Christie books, and when I randomly saw a bit with him in it, I knew I had to find it. The series is on Hulu. I loved James D’Arcy, but I think overall it was silly and the flippant comment at the end was in bad taste. I also think things were changed to give a different feel, but I usually forget most of each Agatha Christie books beyond my either negative or positive reaction almost instantaneously upon finishing them.

    I watched part of Oh, My Venus on Hulu as well. It was my first K-drama, and I didn’t realize they were so long. I assumed the English subtitles would immediately be on, but I had to turn them on, and then I still feel like I was so confused about a lot, and I don’t know where the cultural confusion started and the style of the drama confusion ended. I almost permanently quit, but then the funny parts started happening. There is one scene that was absolutely killer. Also, unlike Hallmark friends her ex was SUPER attractive, and while they weirdly feature his cheating affair, I was loving his smirking smile. And this is why women get in trouble with guys because of the “bad boy” trope. Anyway. I still have to finish this one. I’ve got a focus issue.

    Quibi the Fugitive. I’d been getting Quibi ads on Youtube videos, but since the two shows were scary or gross, I didn’t even pay attention to what Quibi was, I only figured it out later. However, The Fugitive caught my interest right away, that kind of thing is right up my alley, and I loved watching it during my breaks at work, it was a nice treat. HOWEVER, the pizzaz couldn’t cover the absolutely atrocious acting, writing, and oh, the SO many layers of ethical issues, as in, there would be no plot with everyone doing wrong.

    He’s Not That Into You. So I’ve not been into movies and television lately and when I have I’ve come up with some really pathetic ones, maybe so I wouldn’t have to think/pay attention much? Yeah, by watch, I mean skim, there was quite a been of sliding through stuff I didn’t want to watch (like you know, the cheaters, “what if he is the the ONE” see what that stupid pie in the sky fantasy concept gets you). It was boring, and for the most part too excruciatingly real to stuff I hear. You know, if you don’t want a jack***, don’t be one or don’t chase them. And when you find out that you are with one, don’t try for win that loser back, dump his/her *** the first time!!!! Also, Justin Long was super attractive . . . yet don’t date bad boys, sorry. I mean, if you are expecting a good one or to change him. If you are both openly bad to each other, have fun.

    The IT Crowd. So my IT brother-in-law introduced some of my sisters to this show. I’d seen Plant Based Bride do her husband’s bullet journal for one month with the theme of this show (although I can’t find the video, I’m starting to feel crazy but I’m sure she did one), and I may have heard of it another place. I needed something funny, I assumed I’d get lots of sarcasm as its British. I failed to account for a few things, I’d forgotten my brother-in-law’s family taste (Napoleon Dynamite and Elf both of which my sisters have informed me I’d hate) in humor, and I’d also ignored the fact that I don’t find most modern British shows/humor I’ve tried or tried to try all that funny. Actually, I also forgot to account for a type of British humor that I don’t even know how to define and which I forget about. I know if from Princess Bride but I think it also applies to Monty Python (and perhaps to Mr. Bean which my siblings love but which I’ve yet to force myself to watch more than like 30 seconds of). It is not at all dry. I don’t only like dry humor, but I like a particular kind of goofy, like Monkey Business (which also has sarcasm). This kind of humor is like intentionally bad parody. I like sharp poking fun or witty banter or real parody, but not goofy absurdism. The first episode featured more the style I liked, and Moss is darling, but I quickly got bored when goofy stuff unrelated to IT characterization dominated.

    New Girl, “We’re reverse Mormons.” There was a lot of cheap hilarity at first and then it devolved to being all about sex (or was revealed to be) and everyone and everything was boring, no one had any interests. The main girl who was supposed to be awkward and quirky just became basic. And I think Nick was supposed to be the chill, cool guy, not the needy, daddy, issues loser. Should be titled, “Trying to be Friends.” Yeah, failed at that.

    Rewatched both Apple Dumpling Gang movies and Seven Brides for Seven Brothers. Where is this wit now?! Psych, That 70’s Show, and Friends have it, but is that all that is witty in modern stuff?! I’m going to make myself hate those shows if I keep rewatching them.

    I rewatched Clueless twice, I needed to hear some clever burns and to see young Paul Rudd.

     

  • Culture and Entertainment

    More Humor

    Frank James has still been putting out winners such as 16 Personalities on a Road Trip (I’m INTJ with some ISFJ) and 16 Personalities Getting in Shape (I’m ENFP, ENTP with the rationale of INTP) and 16 Personalities as Brides (literally right around our wedding stuff time, so perfect to share with the family, and this one is especially good, also, I’d probably be every bride in that video at some point).

    I mentioned Trey Kennedy made a bunch of videos for a charity challenge in August and some of them are gems.

    Besides the Target vs Walmart this excruciatingly real one about jobs , Coffee Addicts, and my favorite: Plant Moms.

    Do Less Episode Trey Kennedy is from Oklahoma and has stayed in the Midwest, he and Jake were talking about good looking people and how they automatically assume those people are going to LA. Then he told a story about his agent or managment and all those people are from LA, and how they reacted when they came out to Oklahoma, seeing normal people “You have All Your teeth?!”

    Youtubers don’t often seem to stay normal and have normal lives, they always seem to move to LA or somewhere big. Similarly, you don’t often hear normal conversations like when Trey Kennedy and Jake Triplett talk about telling grandparents and parents about their job. Jake said his dad said, “Well you aren’t asking for money so you must be okay.” And Trey said his grandparent in laws think he is unemployed. It is just so funny to hear all the details of things like that.

     

  • Culture and Entertainment

    Walmart vs Target You Know Like Totally Different

    This is a very deep post, obviously.

    Trey Kennedy has been doing 20 videos in August for a charity challenge, and there have been some absolutely hysterical ones. One of my favorites is

    Target People and Walmart People. Now, I know where I live, I think everyone shops at Walmart. Maybe I’m delusional, but I think you can find from upper middle to lower class there. But apparently in other states only um, how to I put it, we’ll just go with the Walmart people meme type people shop there.  Not a very rich nor aiming to be classy state you know.

    Anyway, I go to Walmart all the time because the time from when I get up from my desk to walking in Walmart can’t be above 5″ minutes. I’d like to think I’m not redneck though, actually, I know I’m not redneck. Target is the stereotype of basic white girls, which I’d also like to think I’m not . . . that however is probably up for debate.

    I mean I shop at Walmart and talk like Target, I mean, like you, like, he was like. I was talking to my mom about this, I know a lot of people make fun of Americans for talking like (proper usage!) this, and I wasn’t public schooled not surrounded by popular culture, how on earth did I pick this up? Does it just spontaneously spring from us?!

    Also, I think at lot of people were talking about the cleanliness of the stores. Well, my sister worked at Target, and she had some stories both with regards to that and the classiness of people. I’ll spare you the ones that come to mind.

    But before I worked in the town I work now, the Walmart I would often frequent in the nicer side of the city was side by side literally, with a Target. And I only occasionally went there. My dad always says he doesn’t understand how they can thrive side by side, and we always point out, they really aren’t rivals. Target is a nicer store, supposedly anyway for like clothes, a bit nicer makeup, home goods, things like that.

    But usually to me, Target isn’t nice enough or doesn’t have enough variety. Like Kohl’s is the same in quality to me in terms of clothes. And in my teens and early twenties I would far rather have bought from Kohl’s most of the time. And now, I’m either dirt cheap or more expensive or more specific (like Ulta for makeup) than Target depending on what I’m looking for. I have bought some things from Target, don’t get me wrong, its just not usually my first source for just about anything.

     

  • Culture and Entertainment

    Sarcastic or Facetious?

    I feel like I’ve heard discussion on a couple of podcasts the confusion of meanings between works like “irony” and “sarcasm” and “facetious.”

    Word origin for “sarcasm” is about flesh tearing, which I think Jake Triplett mentioned in one of the Ghostrunner’s podcast episodes which got me thinking about this. It ties in with modern Brits discussing (seemingly constantly) Americans allegedly not understanding sarcasm and me not liking what passes for modern British humor yet adoring the classic humor (more on that in a minute) as well as thinking about how my family and our broader circle talks.

    I know it’s not linguistically sound to hold onto language to concretely. The Wired language guy even discusses the use of “irony” here.

    Sarcasm
    1. Oxford Learner’s Dictionary “a way of using words that are the opposite of what you mean in order to be unpleasant to somebody or to make fun of them”
    2. Merriam Webster “a sharp and often satirical or ironic utterance designed to cut or give pain” or “a mode of satirical wit depending for its effect on bitter, caustic, and often ironic language that is usually directed against an individual”
    3. Cambridge Dictionary “the use of remarks that clearly mean the opposite of what they say, made in order to hurt someone’s feelings or to criticize something in a humorous way”

    All of the definitions point out the intent to hurt in sarcasm. Whenever I’ve thought about sarcasm and Brits saying we don’t know it, I always thought, well we do, we just it as weapon as an ax (as opposed to a rapier wit), and always as a weapon. Now, I know that that IS what it is, it’s mainly as a weapon.

    I’ve thought that some of what passes for “British humor” now is Brits trying to pass spite and/or insecurity off as humor and that the connotation of British humor is them resting on “long dead laurels” (I don’t know where I heard that phrase or to what it was even applied, but it is SO apt here). I never thought the classics stuff was mean-spirited, there was of course plenty of poking fun, but it was intrinsically witty while the impression I get of a lot of modern stuff is intrinsically petty and mean. I think looking up the definitions made things clearer. Modern Brits seem to call sarcasm humor and their humor sarcastic, but classic British humor had more than that and sarcasm was more honed and specific.

    Facetious
    1. Oxford Learner’s trying to appear funny and clever at a time when other people do not think it is appropriate, and when it would be better to be serious” Synonym is “flippant.”
    2. Merriam-Webster “joking or jesting often inappropriately” or “meant to be humorous or funny : not serious”
    3. Cambridge “not serious about a serious subject, in an attempt to be funny or to appear clever” Synonym is tongue-in-cheek.

    These are all vaguer definitions than I thought. I was thinking facetious was the opposite meaning humor and insincere statements without the weaponization, like the connotation I have of “tongue-in-cheek.” But then I’m probably expecting to much rigidity in language.

    Tongue-in-cheek:

    1. Oxford Learner’s not intended seriously; done or said as a joke”
    2. Merriam-Webster “characterized by insincerity, irony, or whimsical exaggeration”
    3. Cambridge “If you say something tongue in cheek, you intend it to be understood as a joke, although you might appear to be serious”

    The Merriam-Webster definition is definitely more the connotation I have of “facetious” and “tongue-in-cheek.”

    Irony
    1. Oxford Learner’s “the funny or strange aspect of a situation that is very different from what you expect; a situation like this” while Ironically “in a way that shows that you really mean the opposite of what you are saying”
    2. Merriam-Webster “the use of words to express something other than and especially the opposite of the literal meaning” and “a usually humorous or sardonic literary style or form characterized by irony” OR “incongruity between the actual result of a sequence of events and the normal or expected result”
    3. Cambridge “a situation in which something which was intended to have a particular result has the opposite or a very different result” while Ironically “in a way that is interesting, strange, or funny because of being very different from what you would expect” and “in a way that suggests you mean the opposite of what you are saying, or are not serious”

    It seems like “ironically” maybe is a modern sort of definition creep. I think these definitions match what I think of as “facetious” and “tongue-in-cheek.” It looks like Merriam-Webster moved that type of humor to irony rather than only have situational irony under the definition.

    Sardonic
    1. Oxford Learner’s “​showing that you think that you are better than other people and do not take them seriously.” Synonym is mocking.
    2. Merriam-Webster “disdainfully or skeptically humorous derisively mocking”
    3. Cambridge “humorous in an unkind way that shows you do not respect someone or something”

    I was thinking sardonic was closer to sarcasm that it actually is, I mean I guess sarcasm IS sardonic, like a type of sardonic comment but they aren’t interchangeable. Sardonic is just a broad category.

    So there is clearly a spectrum of humor ranging from intending to hurt with sarcasm to the milder/not necessarily mean irony/facetiousness/tongue-in-cheek banter. I think that my circle has both. And I think when people use sarcasm we often try to pass it off as banter when it really is not. This explains a lot of hurt feelings and communication problems in my family. It also explains why often modern British “humor” raises my hackles while I positively adore the classic stuff particularly à la Sayers and Trollope. Actually, this kind of humor is present in Montgomery (it also explains why Anne hates sarcasm but uses lots of ironical humor) and Alcott and some modern American middle grades. It’s the American Classics that seem to be entirely devoid of humor, even often the cruel kind. And that topic will be featured in another post.

    As far as modern Americans not understanding sarcasm and or tongue-in-cheek humor, we do, I think perhaps it has more to do with missing the British deadpan delivery. And no, no more definitions, I’m exhausted with that now, that one I think is fairly obvious.

  • Culture and Entertainment

    Inklings July: Heidi 1993

    Heidi at Along the Brandywine created a monthly link-up for movie and book prompts called the Inklings, the July prompt was a cliff scene, and the first one I thought of was the scene from the 1993 Heidi two part series. I adored this film/tv special, and watched it over and over and OVER (I was an obsessive child). This was such a HUGE part of my childhood, as big as Little House and American Girls, just less all encompassing because it was just this film, not the book, and there weren’t any official extras like all the bonnets, dolls, cookbooks, etc. that went with the others which are basically franchises.

    Because of copyright I’m just going to link to photos. Apparently this film wasn’t such a big deal because there aren’t many photos. I don’t really know how to find a photos of the particular scene I want. Maybe if I watch it, I can screenshot it.

    There are so many memories and associations I have with this film.

    • Switzerland has a special place in my heart in major part because of this story (and Treasures of the Snow, and learning my grandfather’s direct line and our closest tie to Europe is here, I should get a photo of one of the documents we have).
    • We have always called milkmaid braids, “Heidi braids” because that is how this version of Heidi wore her hair (I didn’t know the Shirley Temple version was probably more well-known and could barely even start to watch the sacrilegious version)
    • I had boots that I called by Klara boots. You can see them here, barely, doesn’t seem anything special, but I’ve always adore historical fashion, and I just loved those boots and the contrast with the white stockings of which I had a similar (to my mind) pair.
    • My first memories and knowledge (unknowing knowledge) of Latin came from this as I realized in my college Latin class.
    • I (of course) had a HUGE crush on Peter. A few years ago, I tried to track down the actor, but he’s disappeared off the face of the earth apparently.
    • I loved ever little detail about this, from certain food/milk scenes, from the kittens in the tower, from Fräulein Rottenmeier (Jane Seymour)’s particular way of reviving Klara from a faint (I feel like we may have reenacted that part).
    • My grandfather on my dad’s side always had white hair and a beard, also, I was rather afraid of him although it is unfair to characterize him as quite the crab as the man in the story.
    • I think Heidi herself looked like my best friend at the time or maybe it was her sister. I don’t remember wanting freckles myself, but somehow they seemed to be a big deal, I remember one of my sisters really wanted to be freckled (her best friend was the sister of mine, so that may have had something to do with, the things kids want sometimes).

    And of course, the falling of the (probably) ledge in the mountain meadows. Actually, I think Klara pushed Heidi or threw her kitten or something  (actually I think that was Treasures of the Snow or was it both? Need to rewatch both of these films), and to my child’s mind if seemed like a cliff, although it probably wasn’t that steep to an adult, enough to be really dangerous though to a child.

    Oh, the drama for a child. I remember Peter grabbing for Heidi’s hand, I remember him telling Klara to hold his legs, and she has to grab her legs in her hands in order to move near enough to him. It is hard for me to explain how much an impression this made on me. I haven’t watched it in over a decade (and it had been years before that to the previous watches) but I remember how important all this was, so many of the details of this scene.

    I know we reenacted this scene on our old school metal slide on the swing-set in the backyard, I’m almost certain it featured wearing my “Klara” books, possible also white stockings like hers as well.

  • Culture and Entertainment

    Historical Fashion Fun Links: From Rome to Grease

    Getting Dressed in 1665 Delft. I love the Getting Dressed series by Crow’s Eye Production. They show upper and lower class styles for men and women in different times and places in history. They are beautifully done and filled with interesting historical explanations for the use and need of the garments

    Historical Hair: Recreating Authentic Hairstyles from Ancient Greece.

    Roman Makeup Tutorial. I LOVE this. I love that this features Roman Britain.

    Fashion Expert Fact Checks Grease’s Wardrobe. Yeah, I hadn’t seen Grease when I watched this, but I watched that 70’s Show which had Jackie imagining her and Hyde in that iconic scene from Grease.

  • Culture and Entertainment

    What I’ve Listened to: May and June 2020

    Do Less Guests podcast. Trey Kennedy’s version of a patreon.

    Ghostrunners. Silly and goofy, I’ve needed light stuff. Trey’s film guy Jake who he’s had on his podcast (which were my favorites) and one of his best friends. They talk about fast-food a lot. Now I really want some Chick-fil-a.

    Speaking with Joy. She describes herself as a Christian humanist. She has degrees from Oxford and St. Andrew (where she is currently located). This is not just for those who are Christian or of a Christian background. She discusses deep things with other people who appreciate deep things. She mentions have friends of different religions and how they love to discuss these things openly and intellectually.

    This is refreshing, sometimes it seems the options tend to be shallow Christianity that gets hatred and mockery, the hateful and mocking group. Or legalistic, cold Christianity that doesn’t befriend equally those who are not elect (moi, sore subject). Or apathetic non-religious people. But this podcast shows that no, there can be other options. And it hearkens back to the rich tradition of Christian humanism which with Christian media often tending to be of the most abysmal quality, is SO refreshing.

    I was listening to something that felt pseudo intellectual and felt I really needed something intellectual. Since I’d quit Google Podcast in a huff, I hadn’t listened to anymore Speaking with Joy. Google had fixed it (or rather made it easier for me to fix the issue, one never knows with Google). And oh, this podcast, especially when she has guests, does as she intends to “feed [my] soul.” It is SO rich in beauty and intellectualism.

    I recommend. Many of these I want to re-listen to and look up all the recommended books and such.

  • Culture and Entertainment

    What I’ve Been Watching: June 2020

    I didn’t have the motivation to focus on much digital media other than Youtube, for most of the year and now I don’t really have much time or focus for even tv (Hometown was the show of choice for the last several months, but I haven’t had time for that this past month). I have to spend hours on the computer for school, so I really need to get off to wind down enough to sleep. At least that is the goal.

    I watched Coriolanus, or half of it. Yeah, don’t ever overhype things. More on that in a Coriolanus post when I have time.

    I “tried” a episode of Brooklyn 99, and while I know the a show’s pilot isn’t a great thing to judge, I couldn’t be bothered to stop skimming it (actually, I’ve done a lot of skimming) or pursue the show further, everything was so TRYING SO HARD TO BE EDGY AND FUNNY and it was SO shallow, the acting was atrocious, and I only liked Andy Samberg’s character, but he was a cliche I’ve seen done better (Shawn Spencer, for example).

    I rewatched some of Drake and Josh (for what is this, the fourth, fifth time?).

    Also skimmed Schitt’s Creek (yeah, fyi, nsfw!) which is funny in some of the extreme, hedonistic, spoiling, extravagance of how the long adult Rose children and their parents lived previously. Definitely funny moments, but I found the plot tedious overall, and I was impatient of the parents’ sections sans kids and Alexis’ boring “drama,” the first Mutt moments were so strong and then that took a swift and deep nosedive into blah. David was definitely the best, and the full family and sibling moments could be quite funny. Nevertheless, it didn’t have the sharp banter/one-liners that I’ve realized I expect from favorites. I was about done by the end of season one even after skipping parts (anything to do with Roland, ugh, ugh, ugh, and most of the parents’ storylines, blah). I thought season 2 less funny.

    I also, stupidly watched some Cary Grant movie called Houseboat or something. Very dull and very sexist/objectifying (which since I usually unlikely to say this, I usually think people read into many things too much from a place of ignorant modern privilege, and I’m not a modern “feminist”, and I generally think lots of people throw the baby out with the bath water, you know this is bad). Also am I crazy or does seem like the the 50’s and 60’s movies and television are worse in that way than 30’s and 40’s? It’s definitely been true of the ones I’ve seen. Maybe I should do a brief post on that.

    The best media watching moment was when my youngest sister decided my mom needed to open her mind to different movies (besides Disney princess and Hallmark and the occasional sports movie). We went downstairs to look our choices over while Mom finished up some chores, and my sister decided to give her the choice between Pirates of the Caribbean and Catching Fire. Mom chose Pirates, and I think she did enjoy it, except for the boring end. We need to watch 2 and 3 with her. Ah, me those movies are so excellent. I wish the same people worked on the last two, the genius left you can certainly tell.

  • Culture and Entertainment

    The Rake gets the Virgin and the Harpy gets the Angel Boy

    “You could live a thousand lifetimes and not deserve him.”

    I LOVE the film Catching Fire, and I always think Peeta is an angel. But thinking that and with all the Georgette Heyer books in my mind . . .

    Georgette Heyer novels represent an/the old type of common thinking, the men do what they want and get the best girl and act all self-righteous if she is even slightly less than perfect even though they are horrid. This led to why rake, libertine, playboy, etc. not having the same connotation as whore even though they are literally the male/female correspondents (like Fez calling Kelso a whore when calling him out on his double-standards, it felt more “right” because he was, rather than cheering him on as a player, you know?). I mean to get the same connotation you have to say man-whore, um, I don’t think this circular, I think it started with the men!

    This started when most stories were written by men and later some women (ahem, Heyer) who liked the save-the-bad boy trope. Also, don’t blame this all on the patriarchy, tons of women upheld (and uphold) this in fact and fiction, glorifying the bad boy. The stories might be dying out or at least certain aspects, but the reality doesn’t feel like it is (although, perhaps the mores were never quite as extreme as fiction seems to imply?).

    Naturally that perspective makes my blood boil. Guess what, “feminism” didn’t fix it; we know have other problems including the exact opposite (although not sexual mores this time, but more in overall character). We have an overarching storyline (watching Hunger Games, Hallmark, and listening to women at work) where the woman can be as shrewish, manipulative, and hateful as possible and blame all men for everything without at all examining themselves. And not merely not understanding equivalency (you are both awful) or even normalcy (he’s the average to your awful, so normal is better than you), but expecting an angel boy.

    Yes, it can happen, but that doesn’t mean it should, you shouldn’t get a good boy, the good girl should get the good boy. The bad man shouldn’t expect a angelic princess. The good people should expect the other good people. Why is this so hard to grasp? I know everyone is some extent blind to themselves, but to be so blind?!!!! To hear most people talk about relationships, you’d think he/she is the saintliest of people who always so incomprehensibly ends up with the devil. Did you ever perhaps wonder just once if you just might possibly have contributed one smidge to the problem?!

    Here are the actual possibilities for a relationship. For simplicity’s sake I’ll assume three states of being although in reality they represent the absolute ends and middle of the spectrum of humanity.

    1. Good
    2. Average
    3. Toxic

    Person A is good and  Person B is good
    Person A is good and Person B is average
    Person A is good and Person B is toxic
    Person A is average and Person B is good
    Person A is average and Person B is average
    Person A is average and Person B is toxic
    Person A is toxic and Person B is good
    Person A is toxic and Person B is average
    Person A is toxic and Person B is toxic

    Even in this highly simplified situation, there are very few saints and demon matches, and since most people are someone in the middle in the average realm, the likelihood that one is of average decency dating someone of average decency is quite high. If you aren’t an angel, why is your significant other supposed to be? If you want an angel, try being one.

    The long version of one reason why I’m single, I’ve not achieved angelic status. Or is it I’ve not even achieved average goodness ?!

     

  • Culture and Entertainment

    Accents and Language

    How to tell accents apart

    4 Amazing Things About Languages

    I feel like I’ve linked all the Wired videos this guy has done. I wish he had his own channel with videos on all the different accents. It’s just so fascinating and lovely listening to an expert, everything I’d heard/read before was from the perspective of casual observer.

    Anyone notice in older tv shows and maybe also movies, actors were allowed to keep their regional accent? I just noticed that last year when watching Monk and listening to Sharona’s strong Boston accent. And later hearing the accents in Clueless. You can tell when accents are real vs. oh, I don’t know maybe Daniel Craig’s awful accent in Knives Out.

    I feel like now, everyone’s accent is “polished” out (Well, not Tommy Lee Jones, but then he is of the older generation of actors wait, those Texas actors in Supernatural still sound Texan too, I guess you can’t streamline Texans), actually everyone’s enunciated is polished out too, maybe because they don’t really hire people from the areas they are portraying. Are we all going to eventually sound Standard American, whatever that is? I hope not. How boring.

    Midwest Translation. I found this on Fernway’s Call blog. This is very specific to the upper Midwest, and I didn’t even know this accent existed until the last few years (and it really can be that strong although he’s obviously exaggerating his own personally; I, um, thought someone at one of my jobs was from the Northeast, don’t kill me, turns out he was from Minnesota, both are super nasally).

    By midwest, I was usually thinking Ohio Valley-Missouri and the flyover states. Needless, to say any Midwesterner I hear sounds NOTHING like that, it’s going to be “neutral,” country, or southern. I think the real American “neutral” (what newscasters are/were trained in) is the Salt Lake city/Utah area accent (per my favorite Albion’s Seed).

    Canadian accents can have a slight resemblance to the upper Midwest accent. Also, I felt like more of this type of thing could’ve showed through on That 70’s Show! That would have made it much more authentic, so would’ve hiring people from that area. I mean a few people had a performed accent, but I mean, I wanted more regional stuff, just day to day differences. I feel like they thought adding in beer all the time was Wisconsin enough.

    This pdf from the census bureau is the actual geographic regions of the U.S.

     

  • Culture and Entertainment

    Nonsense Words and Speech And Is Your Native Tongue Sarcasm?

    Do you ever do intentional nonsense words and names and intentionally misused phrases in your family, just for the heck of it? Or does that not boat your float? I should keep a list of our nonsense words and nicknames. Rubicon instead of Becky, Balibbalubalah instead of Lizzie. My brother was Buddy boy, Sonny Boy, and Bunny Soy.

    I think it goes along with our need to rhyme every baby talk name, thus far for our pets (which I wrote about at the end of this post, we have more now, Luna is usually Loony or Loony-tunes or Luners and Holly is also Hollikins), but since pets and kiddos get the same voice. . .

    I can’t do this for my niece’s name, nothing works right. All my kids must have sing-song Southern names of the Sally May, Billy Bob variety (okay, more high-falutin, than that) so I can rhyme them sillier. Anywho.

    Speaking of baby-talk voices for pets. So not everyone gets a high cartoony voice instantly upon seeing some delightful fuzzball?

    And what about “polite” voices?

    I was on some internet video about how Europeans think of Americans, and one comment mentioned how high American girls’ voices get when greeting someone, and another hilarious commenter said something, like,

    ‘ “Oh, hiiiiiii!!!” Glass breaks.’

    So, it’s not just me that gets a Barbie doll voice on the phone when I “have to be polite”?

    And we used goofy, made up swear and names-calling words, like “what the Hufflepuff” and “you dingbat.”

    And when people are pretending to be subtle and rude in a way that they also want you to know they are not being subtle, we call it suBtle, pronouncing the “b.” Although, quite frankly, that is the only “subtlety” I usually come across.

    Transitioning suBtlety into snark, last Christmas some of our extended family were roasting some of my siblings (giving out “burns” is another family trait), and they were talking about how this is how we roll, you gotta be able to take it, we prepare you for the real world.

    I did struggle with sarcasm and being too literal as a teenager, actually, compared to most of my family I probably still do, but between family, our social circle, and British lit, I had to learn to survive, hence, I’ve never understood, the “Americans don’t understand sarcasm.”

    Oh, we understand it all right, it is just usually a different dialect, the dripping-with-sarcasm rather than dead-pan (we are way to0 expressive for that ) or axe rather than rapier sarcasm.

  • Culture and Entertainment

    If Digital Assistants and Such Were Southern and Other Funny Southern Things

    If Alexa was Southern

    The slow driving when there is a little rain. Yeah, that is me. When a few snowflakes caused the car to eject him, oh my word. We aren’t this far south, but I remember people scorning Atlanta when a few inches of snow basically stopped city traffic. Look, it makes sense for Northerners to invest in 4-wheel drive, and Northern cities in tons snow plows (we have a few), but Atlanta and around, that would be stupid.

    Amazon Echo for Eastern Kentucky

    “Fancified Pringles Can”

    “Your unintelligent personal assistant”

    Humidity. Well, the video is funny because it’s accurate but wow, humidity makes everything feel so much hotter. Don’t look at the temperature on the weather app, look at what the humidity is going to make it feel like.

    Our “overreaction” to a slight chill in the air. I’m so hot-blooded, I personally don’t react like this. Actually, where we are we do get seasons, but we make get all of them in one day. Way back in college a student from Boston was laughing at our “cold.”

    Country sounds to get you to sleep. “In Memaw’s arms.” The tornado siren and train. I put crickets on my sleep sounds recently.

    Things to Do in My state. Strike out “ope” and put “coke” for all soft drinks and this is what I saw on FB for my state. The deer thing, my stars its carnage.