...sugar and spice and everything nice...

Saturday, October 23, 2004

I have a confession to make...

It is a little embarrassing to admit this...I mean, very embarrassing to admit this. It is something I have struggled with for a long time and just when I think I have overcome it it pops back up into my life. Im really not sure how to handle it because I never know when this problem might suddenly appear out of nowhere. You see, as an intelligent woman it is becoming quite bothersome. So I decided to humbly confess my stumbling block to the rest of the world (ok, just the twelve of you that read this blog, but you get the picture.) You see.....I....I....I....mispronounce words!

I know how this all started. Years ago I was innocently reading some amazing novel like "Pride and Prejudice" or one of my favorite Agatha Christie mysteries and I came across a word that I didnt know. So I sounded it out and moved on understanding what the word meant. The problem is when I sounded it out I put emphasis in the wrong place or made silent letters not silent and created my own new word. What's funny is that I actually know the real word, but just think this is some other word! So while I am actually a National Honor Society suma cum laude graduate , I end up sounding like a high school drop out!! (not that there's anything wrong with being a high school drop out :o)

The first time I realized this was during the big "low fat" craze of the 90's. When "Fat Free" ice cream, cookies, cakes, what have you were all the rage. There was this one ingredient that I saw in almost everything...."asspartumay." Does that sound familiar? Probably not because it is really pronounced "aspertaim" or as the correct spelling goes "aspartame." I didnt know how to say it so I sounded it out and began referring to it in my secret language--until one day when I was talking to my boss and she was telling me how she didnt like the low fat ice cream because it upset her stomache. "Yeah," I said, "It's that asspartumay they put in it!" It was silent...she just kinda stared at me with a "Whas that you say?" look. Finally she said, "You mean aspartame?" "Oh, yeah, that's what I meant," I sheepishly replied. I quickly walked away.

So the idea that I mispronouce words has always been lurking in the back of my mind. Sometimes I have an intelligent reply to someone's statement then I hesitate because I am not sure I will say it correctly! Case in point, several years later at a different job it happened again. And the think is I knew the correct pronounciation of this word, I just thought it was a different word for the same thing! I was discussing a movie with a coworker and that quirky little word just popped out of my mouth. "Yeah, wasnt that a great moment," I said? "It was so po-ig-nant." Yes, I pronounced the "g" as "igg" like "big" as in "big fat dufus!" Again I was quickly corrected, "You mean poyniant (poignant)?" she asked. I stood corrected.

The one that got me on the forever to be teased list with my husband took place as we were leaving our driveway one afternoon. Just as we reached the bottom of the hill tons of traffic came upon us and we were forced to wait before pulling out. "Here comes the calvary!" I stated trying to be funny. "What did you say" asked my husband? "Here comes the calvary, why?" "Dont you mean cavalry?" "What do you mean" I asked? "It's cav-al-ry. Cal-va-ry is where Jesus died." Silently I mouthed the words to myself "cav-al-ry...cal-va-ry." Hmmm, maybe he had a point.

The last few years I havent made it thru a busy intersection with my husband without hearing "Here comes the CALVARY, watch out for Jesus!"

Saturday, October 16, 2004

a day in my life

I have been participating in a play group of sorts in a nearby area and have gotten to know some of the moms pretty well. One mom and I always kinda hang out together. We dont know each other real well, but we have kids around the same age and we enjoy chit chatting so I always enjoy running into her.

One day Melanie (the one I know best) invited me to meet at Starbucks and then walk down to the park together with the kids. I thought she meant the park just two blocks away that we usually see each other at, so as I got ready that morning I put on my corduroy capris and flip-flops and got myself all "spruced up" for the day. Well she showed up in her sweats and tennis shoes with no make up and a ponytail and asked if I would mind walking to the other park nearby. Little did I know she meant the park I usually drive to about a mile away.

As we started walking I began to realize just where we were headed and how far we had to go. Not wanting to make things awkward I acted like it was no big deal...I mean, I had agreed to the whole thing so I certainly couldnt back out now! To make matters worse I havent really exercised since I was pregnant and there were lots of hills! I didnt have any water with me since I had assumed we were just walking a few blocks and as I approached each hill I swore I'd never leave home without it again. I was sweating like a pig in my good clothes, flip flops flying all over the place....in fact finally I took them off and climbed the hills barefooted...my mascara was probably running faster than I was! As I dug thru my pockets I was thrilled to find a hairband so at least I could put my hair up.

When we finally got to the park all I could think about was the huge walk home. Once we got started and were about half way I mentioned going a different direction (that I knew was a shorter walk back towards my car) but somehow I didnt state my case clearly and she thought I would get lost that way and assured me the way home was "this" direction. I hated to protest since I had mistakenly mentioned in the beginning never having been to this park before! So we went the full way home! I felt like such a fool the rest of the way--I kept saying ridiculous things like "I dont know why I wore these shoes!" and "No really, it's much easier climbing the hills barefoot pushing a 20 lb baby!" and "Boy, (huff huff) I didnt realize I was so outta shape!" Or my favorite "I will definitely dress more appropriately next time! What was I thinking?" These days we've decided to just meet at the park.