What do you sound like? Do you have an accent?

@mommyboo (13198)
United States
March 10, 2013 7:58pm CST
Do you even KNOW if you do? LOL! Since we are from all over, I am curious to see what answers I get. I have no accent, and I've asked people from various places and they all agree with me. Of course English is my only (spoken) language and I've never lived in any part of the country known for accents, such as Texas, Georgia, Minnesota, Wisconsin, New York, or Massachusetts lol! Typing of course has NO accent so it's very unhelpful in regards to this discussion. Feel free to embellish your response to show me what you sound like
5 people like this
18 responses
@owlwings (40032)
• Cambridge, England
11 Mar 13
Well, of course, I would probably say that you DO have an accent - an American accent - whereas, being British and having grown up in the South of England and been educated at private schools, most people would agree that I speak English without any accent at all. The British Isles have nearly as many recognisable accents as there are counties and large towns and I speak with none of those. Standing in an English market town not so very long ago, many local people would have been able to say with certainty which individual village a person came from within the 15 mile radius of the market. Nobody, however, would be able to identify what part of Britain I come from by my accent because I have none.
2 people like this
@mommyboo (13198)
• United States
18 Mar 13
I suppose you're right, I have an American accent - as opposed to a British accent - but as far as regionally in America, I have none!
@cynthiann (18619)
• Jamaica
11 Mar 13
I was brought up to speak what was called 'The Queen's eng;ish' and this meant to speak without a local accent. This eas quite difficult as my mother was Irish and she had a delightful Irish accent. And then I married and moved to Jamaica. Out here - even after 40 years- my accent is considered British. But when I go to the U.K. they think my accent is more Jamaican. I don't know. I understand the local language called patois but rarely use it apart from the odd word or two or expression. Mi did a tell you seh, nah to dweet. Translation: I told you not to do it What an intersting post. Congratulations
1 person likes this
• Philippines
11 Mar 13
i had an aussie boss who worked around asia so he has learned to speak slowly and clearly, which i was grateful for since we're used to american english/american accent. when he and another aussie who also worked around asia went home to sydney for a vacation, they were mistaken for americans. i did love his choice of words, like appalling and, uhm, poofters, and when he'd say, i saw rit (instead of i saw it).
@cynthiann (18619)
• Jamaica
11 Mar 13
I haven't heard the word poofters in many years. Thanks for reminding me
@mommyboo (13198)
• United States
18 Mar 13
I figured out you probably lived in Jamaica ! I was looking forward to seeing what got posted here because it can be challenging to write phonetically. I failed 'hukd on fonix' (hooked on phonics) because the first time I saw it written that way, I immediately had to ask someone else what that nonsense said! I like Irish accents too, I enjoy a lot of international accents - as long as they are not so thick that I cannot understand. Some that are hard for me to understand are Asian accents, sometimes Indian, and some Spanish. It just depends how well the person speaks English. If they speak English poorly AND have a really strong accent, sometimes I have to find an interpreter or just not have a conversation. hereandthere: when I worked at McDonalds in high school, I worked with a guy who was an import from the UK. There were some words he couldn't say, I still remember repeating 'Hyundai' (a type of car) and we all burst out laughing because he couldn't figure out how to say it. It's basically pronounced HUN-DAY but he seemed to have trouble with it based on how it was spelled lol.
@santuccie (3374)
• United States
17 Mar 13
Everybody has an accent, even though Californians and some others are often "stereotyped" as having no accent at all (not sure if "stereotyped" is the correct word choice). I am originally from Fremont, California. I have what you might call a "SF Bay Area" accent. My most comfortable vocal range is that of first tenor, so my voice is high-pitched when I am wide awake, and perhaps slightly nasal. I actually have three octaves vocal range (compared to the average of two octaves), and my voice may go rather deep when I am drowsy. However, my tone remains somewhat thin and "nasal"; it does not resonate like that of a natural bass or hefty baritone. You and I may sound similar for the most part, as we are both Californians. But a lot of Southern Californians sound slightly different to me than Northern Californians, and a lot of people from the Central Valley are more distinct still. The way they say, "totally," is with an accent that I have never been able to imitate and sound authentic.
@mommyboo (13198)
• United States
22 Mar 13
I don't talk like a 'Valley Girl' or anything, probably because I didn't grow up here lol. I think I sound the same as I did when I lived in WA, people don't typically ask me where I used to live based on how I talk, sometimes it's because I seem not very familiar with the area. I've lived here for 10 years but I rely on GPS to get around anything that isn't close and familiar. It took me a long time to branch out and go too far from the town I live in, getting lost is a nightmare and getting lost with kids (who can't help you) is even worse lol. Apparently I sound very young on the phone, as at least once or twice since I've been an adult, someone on the phone has asked me if my mom was there. I hope it was embarrassing for the caller when they heard 'I AM the mom, what did you have to say to me? MY mother lives in another state, thanks.'
1 person likes this
@santuccie (3374)
• United States
22 Mar 13
LOL, I hear you. I too can sound younger than I am; except in the morning, when I'm down in my bass range. I love your comeback, though. I'd bet someone has gotten a shock out of it. As far as being in an unfamiliar area, I'm right there with you. I lived in CA my whole life until two years ago, when I moved to MO to be near family. I also use the GPS a lot. Of course, I'm not going anywhere right now; we got half a foot of snow yesterday, the second day of spring! And while I am okay in the snow, they always advise us to stay off the road as much as possible, because a lot of people do NOT know how to drive in the snow. And not to sound like a partisan, but they do say that the red states are far more dangerous than blue states to drive in (not suggesting that Democrats are better drivers than Republicans, although I have noticed that drivers of cars with Obama stickers use their blinkers more than those with Romney or McCain stickers). Thank goodness I work from home!
• United States
11 Mar 13
from what everyone tells me,oh yea i do. if you've ever seen "my cousin vinny",like that. two yoots.heavy northeastern.
1 person likes this
@mommyboo (13198)
• United States
19 Mar 13
NY, NJ, MA? Do you think Californians have an accent, or a lack of one? LOL
1 person likes this
• United States
26 Mar 13
RI. um..i really haven't heard enough californians speak in person to know. most unique i've probably heard is virginian.it's like a "journalistic" accent,most likely due to so many "elsewhere" people moving to norfolk.all of them mix in. they used to laugh at my pronounciation of norfolk.appearently,i should be saying "nawwwwwfick"..
@johndur (3049)
• Pasig, Philippines
11 Mar 13
Sone of my friends say that my englirh has an accent and its pinoy ac
1 person likes this
@mommyboo (13198)
• United States
18 Mar 13
What does that sound like? Can you type it phonetically, so I can read how it would sound? LOL!
@johndur (3049)
• Pasig, Philippines
19 Mar 13
Sample word...BIRTHDAY bert-dey..... SPECIAL is-pes-yal Hope you liked it...lol
• United States
11 Mar 13
I live in Ny and when ever I go down south i can tell the differance between me and them. so,if you know anyone who is from ny they would have a plain speaking language over someone from the deep south who speaks in what I call a lay tone. not everyone but,when I lived in miami for 8 years people would speak the worst way and they all said itwas easy to speak that way. like i am finna go to tha stow insteadof going to the store. ug I could live the rest of my life without hearing southern slang.
1 person likes this
• Mexico
11 Mar 13
I noticed that in usa gifts, when I met people from diff. south states in the usa. I loved they way they talked.
1 person likes this
@mommyboo (13198)
• United States
18 Mar 13
Well, the northeast part sounds much different than southeast. I hear a lot of 'pahk the cah' type stuff from northeast, and what you described from Miami sounds about right. It may not be quite that bad, my husband grew up in FL and he (fortunately) has no accent but many people there do.
@Lindalinda (4112)
• Canada
18 Mar 13
Why do you say you have no accent. You must have an American accent if you live in the U.S. and your fist language is English. Maybe you don't have a Southern or Boston accent but still if you travelled abroad people would know you have an American accent. The British have a British accent and if they are upper class they have a distinct accent like the Queen. Australians and East Indians have a distinct accent. I am Canadian and we have a Canadian accent similar to American but not quite, except French Canadians who have a distinct accent when they speak English because usually their first language is French. English Canadians have a distinct accent when they speak French because their fisrt language is usually English. So we all have an accent of some sorts.
1 person likes this
@mommyboo (13198)
• United States
22 Mar 13
Yes, I have an American accent. I considered that to be a non-accent though, since it has no regional American accent attached to it. I hope I explained that correctly lol. I told someone else more or less I say all the letters I should and none of the ones that aren't there. A lot of regional accents add or drop letters in words, which is what makes some of them sound so harsh to me.
• United States
11 Mar 13
I am from texas and from down here every body has an accent. It's all different though. It's just like if you were to go up to new orleans they all have different accents too. I actually work in different areas of america sometimes when work calls for it and i've asked many people if they can tell where i was from. And they all asked if i was from down south? i always told them yes. But where. Cause texas has a strong thick accent. Specially if you make one of them mad. It's ineviteable then. And the north they have a crazy accent too. don't get me wrong now but some of them just don't know how to talk. like pie and pop? what exactly is that? Not being rude but i've heard it's several things. But no matter where i go everyone is nice usually.
1 person likes this
@mommyboo (13198)
• United States
22 Mar 13
I will sometimes ask someone where their home is if they have a different 'strong' accent, like southern, or something that sounds international. I have to laugh about the pie and pop thing - when I lived in WA I used to call soda 'pop'. I have not called it pop since I moved down here, and I giggle whenever I hear someone call it 'pop'. Then you have the group of people who actually call it 'soda pop', both words. I'm guessing that's a regional thing maybe. My daughter calls it Coke or Pepsi lol.
@wolfie34 (26792)
• United Kingdom
11 Mar 13
Here in the UK we have a lot of different accents, dependent on what city you were born near, some people lose their accents and some can actually adopt new accents, usually if you move somewhere, but that is commonplace if you move to any new country you are bound to pick up an accent. I don't have an accent myself, although I was born close to London. I don't have a Londoner accent. When people think of London they think of Cockney London, the rhyming slang. Although I know a lot of rhyming slang I am not a Cockney.
1 person likes this
@mommyboo (13198)
• United States
22 Mar 13
I bet you sound like you're from the UK though, as opposed to a 'mutt' American, like me lol. I can probably make a good attempt at a British accent but it won't sound like someone who grew up speaking that way. Everyone can tell a tourist lol. Have you ever traveled abroad?
• Portugal
11 Mar 13
I actually don't have an accent, as I speak perfect english. The thing is... that's not even my mother language. I learnt to speak english really well by watching loads of subtitled cartoons, believe it or not! People are often envious of my language capabilities, and it's not just english. I can literally learn any language easily and speak it like if I'm a native of that certain country.
1 person likes this
@mommyboo (13198)
• United States
19 Mar 13
How many different languages do you speak? Which is your primary/first? I don't know where you live, but your written English is great! I can tell when someone may be learning English and posting here because there are a lot of awkward phrasing of sentences or misspelled words in their posts.
@deebomb (15322)
• United States
11 Mar 13
Hello mommyboo. Every one has an accent of some kind. It might be a light accent or a very heavy one. We don't hear our voice the same as others do because of the way it is projected away from us. Years ago I heard my voice on a tape recorder and was very surprised at the way I sounded. I think it is the same with the accents. When I was 13 years old I was traveling by bus from Scottsbluff, Nebraska to Denver,Colorado and my seat mate an older girl mentioned that I had an accent. I was so insulted. A that age kid are so sensitive. I had been living in Arizona before moving to Nebr. The moire people move around the less accent we have in my opinion.
1 person likes this
@mommyboo (13198)
• United States
19 Mar 13
Well, see above, the comment I made to scarlet. I am wondering if people from the northeast consider people from the west coast (WA, OR, CA) to HAVE an accent (because we don't sound like New Yorkers, for instance) or to have a LACK of one. I was just in AZ recently and I don't recall noticing that anybody had an accent, not in general. People sound just like Californians in AZ - unless of course they were imported from New Jersey, Georgia, etc LOL. I've actually traveled to, been in, or been through a lot of different states, but the majority of them before I was 5, which may be why I never picked up anything regional. I also lived in Germany for awhile but I was I think three or under.
@devonavis (1857)
• Greece
11 Mar 13
Haha! I can imagine how messy this site will be when if typing has accents!
1 person likes this
@mommyboo (13198)
• United States
19 Mar 13
Hehe! I more or less meant for people to try and type phonetically so I could 'read' what they sound like when they speak. I have some friends that I only know online, from forums, although we've been friends for almost 10 years. I have found it really interesting to note that most of the time they look like I expect them to, when I see photos, but from time to time they have SOUNDED completely different than I thought they would! I have one friend from MA and I guess I didn't expect her to have an accent - well, she does! She sounds cute but totally nothing like me!
@gkutti (111)
11 Mar 13
i trying speaking different accents and personally like the french people's english. it sounds nice to hear them and i am trying to adopt to it. so right now i am slowly turning french accented. but typically i belong the no-particular-accent group, just like you.thanks for the discussion by the way i thought i was the only one on this wide planet with no particular accent to speak in. how many people do you think are there just like us both?
@mommyboo (13198)
• United States
19 Mar 13
Not sure! Generally I would think people with no accent come from or live in a region that has no discernable accent - meaning they properly pronounce each word, saying the letters that are there and not adding or dropping any. Also, in general (not always) people who speak perfect English with no accent usually have learned English as their FIRST language or at the same time as they learned another or multiple languages, as children. I hear a lot of accents when English is someone's second or third or fourth language, most heavily influenced by whichever language was their first. Where do you live? I'm just curious.
@sulynsi (2836)
• Canada
11 Mar 13
this reminds me of something that happened to me a few years back I must have been looking rather intently at a couple of ladies, as they turned to me and asked what the matter was embarassed , I apologized and said I was just fascinated by their accent, which is true of me they retorted 'well, woyke up an' smell tha' cawfee, you gawt one too'
1 person likes this
@mommyboo (13198)
• United States
18 Mar 13
lol! It was just different from yours!
• Lenox, Georgia
11 Mar 13
I was born and raised in NY until I was 19 years old. So when I moved down South everyone always commented on my accent. I most definitely had an accent when I first moved to NC. Now that I have been here for almost 10 years I say y'all quite often, Lol. I never thought I would ever say that! I like being a Southern Woman now, it suits me.
1 person likes this
@mommyboo (13198)
• United States
18 Mar 13
How long do you think it took to change your accent? NY and southern are VERY different lol. I'd call them almost opposite!
@TLilly12 (1230)
• United States
11 Mar 13
I don't have an accent I live in Virginia and I have heard people talk with accent I think they sound nice with a accent,I like talking to people, from different parts of the work, to see what kind of life they live, you learn a lot by, talk to different kind of people.
1 person likes this
@mommyboo (13198)
• United States
18 Mar 13
I really enjoy international accents - British, Australian, etc. I chuckle a lot at regional American accents though. I know that makes me sound terrible! I probably would not find them as funny if I HAD one. I have just never lived long enough in a place that has one. I primarily grew up in WA state, which has no accent, you actually pronounce ALL of your letters. I think that's why so many different accents sound funny to me, in many of them, people either say letters that aren't there, or they leave out or drop letters that ARE there. It sounds harsh and 'off' to my ears because I'm used to speaking (and hearing) everything the way it really is, if that makes sense. I live in CA now and except for people who are imports to this state, people do not seem to have accents here either. For the most part, unless they are lazy, people pronounce as well as they did up north. I only notice different sounds of letters when you hit midwest, and southern accents as you head into Texas, Georgia, etc. My niece learned how to talk when my brother was stationed in GA, so she sounded super cute when she was a toddler. They moved back to WA eventually and she lost her accent pretty quickly.
@cupkitties (7598)
• United States
2 Apr 13
Well, I'm from the south but when I'm thinking in my head my accent is British. In fact all of you have a British accent when I read your discussions and replies.
• United States
2 Apr 13
oh um.. here http://vocaroo.com/i/s19DRu73TjyF Please disregard the odd noise. No clue where its coming from.
@asliah (11148)
• Philippines
17 Apr 13
that is the thing that i can not do when i speak English,there are only few words that i can speak with accent but most of all make me hard to speak it,and yes typing of course don't have an accent and no need to put an accent.