Friday, April 27, 2007


A note to some of you Blown-Eyes who may be attending your first Texas Blogmeet in another week.

Texans, by and large, don’t sound like people from New Jersey.

To the uneducated ear, Texas English may sound like Southern English. But Suthen and Texan are two different things.

As a wee lad, I would be hauled down to North Miami Beach for periodic visits with the Grand-’Rents. That was where I heard Southern English for the first time. There was a lady named Thelma (Thelma!) who lived a couple of doors down from my grandparents. She was originally from Alabama, and she spoke with a honeyed drawl that I, at that tender age, found enchanting. I could never get enough of Thelma’s beautiful Southern voice.

Plus, she had bodacious ta-tas. [Although I may have made that part up.]

Texas English is different, though. It has a more Southwestern flavor.

Houston Steve tells a story of his first exposure to Texas English. His family emigrated from England to the United States when he was seven years old, finally ending up in Houston. Steve was duly brought in to the local elementary school, there to be registered. The lady in the registration office patted him on the head and said, “Hi there! My name is Mrs. Goff.”

Only it sounded more like, “Hah thayur! Mah name is Missiz Gawff!”

And little Steve turned to his mother, bewildered, and said, “Mummy, I thought they spoke English here.”

True story.

Now, you won’t need a Texan Phrasebook to navigate your way through the wilds of Kerrville...although you would be well served by laying your hands on a copy of Ken Weaver’s masterwork Texas Crude. A paperback copy of this Literary Classic - lavishly illustrated by Robert Crumb - will set you back at least $49.00, according to the latest listings at Amazon.

Just do what all the other bloggers will be doing. Open your mouth and pour in liberal amounts of Shiner Bock. Or whatever other Adult Beverage you prefer. You won’t have any problem making yourself understood.

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