And speaking of the radio…

What American accent do you have? (Best version so far)


(“Midland” is not necessarily the same thing as “Midwest”) The default, lowest-common-denominator American accent that newscasters try to imitate. Since it’s a neutral accent, just because you have a Midland accent doesn’t mean you’re from the Midland.

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[via Hal]

I grew up in Richmond, Virginia, and had a distinct Southern accent when I first showed up at RPI — enough of one that someone gave me a hard time (probably in jest) when I showed up at WRPI and said I wanted to read the news. A week later, my Southern accent was gone, courtesy of some intensive listening to WCBS-AM’s news staff, and my radio career (I use the term loosely) began.

3 thoughts on “And speaking of the radio…

  1. Try taking the test again in a month or so. I find that I alternate between “Northern” and “Midland” or “Midwestern” (depending on the test and how they code dialects).

    Is it “soda”, “pop”, “soda-pop”, or “Coke”?

  2. Soda. Unless it’s the Real Thing, in which case it’s Coke. Of course, if it’s the Choice of a New Generation, it’s Pepsi. But I’ve basically stopped drinking any of ’em if I have iced tea or sparkling water available.

  3. “Northern: You have a Northern accent. That could either be the Chicago/Detroit/Cleveland/Buffalo accent (easily recognizable) or the Western New England accent that news networks go for.”

    Hmm…. I grew up in New Jersey, of Pennsylvanian parents. I went to college in Baltimore. About 20 years ago, I had lunch with a linguist known for being able to pinpoint one’s accent to within a county, nationwide. He quizzed me for half an hour, then said he had no idea where my accent was from. He guessed Minnesota, perhaps. Hm. Is it that non-descript? And do I really sound like I’m from Chicago??? I don’t THINK so!

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