Uncommon it is not, especially when you’re American and want to engage in the fashion discourse, to find yourself at the intersection of dumbfounded and dimwitted. After all, so many of the pivotal terms and words stored in the bank of pretentious fashion jargon are derived from the French and Italian languages. In response to that, a decent sized bevy of model citizens have been selflessly posting pronunciation videos on YouTube to help remind even the most plebe of interlocutors that Givenchy is not pronounced “give-en-chye” — it’s “jee-von-shee.”
Now, I’m not trying to hit on myself or anything but I’ve never really considered this condition a problem of my own. Call it the singular redeeming quality of having immigrant parents who still, twenty six years later, struggle with the English lexicon, or call it my own reluctance (after all, I was born and raised here) to let go of the heritage I have chosen to cling to. As a matter of fact, I have found that pronouncing American words (see: assuage, predilection, solace) is a far more humiliating experience for me.
Still, last Friday, just before a phone call with a brand I shall not name, pronounced with a most affected rolling r, silent h and dramatic w that I still can’t quite utter, I took to YouTube to learn the ways of an otic dictionary. The result?
I could go on…
Nay, I will go on!
Fine, last one.
Needless to say but I will anyway, when all was erroneously said and done, I learned absolutely nothing but laughed really, really hard. Now, it seems like my duty as a citizen and your friend to pass on the torch (that’s tawarachtor) to you.
How’s that for a Monday pick-me-up?