Language can be fattening if you use too much shortening.


When w’d’ya’ want?’ becomes what you want and ‘how d’ya’ do?’ becomes how you do, then you know you’re becoming fluent in English and therefore incomprehensible to much of the world. But be careful. I might have to ask, “wha’d’you say” when you ask, “wha’ ‘tcha’ name?” but soon you’ll get it right to the nth degree and “wha ‘tsyer name?” will roll off your tongue like melted butter and you’ll never have to ask me “wha’ cha’ say?” again. It’s not a good idea to learn shortcuts in language. It’s better if they learn themselves. Otherwise it sounds unnatural and pretentious. There’s no substitute for speaking correctly, grammar-perfect and sound specific. Speed creates the shortcuts of necessity, the unaccented valleys of pitch becoming indistinct filler. For speakers of tonal languages, like here in Interzone, English by convention almost becomes a tonal language itself, changes in emotional pitch imitated as if a part of the internal structure itself. For the uninitiated, tonal languages employ changes in pitch to distinguish different words from each other, not to show emotion. We use volume for that. Got it? A rising tone does not necessarily denote a question. Though the native language will employ various tones, the borrowed tongue will invariably sound monotonal, hence the frequent borrowing of emotional pitch to compensate for the otherwise lack of sonic inflection. All this is understandable and easily predictable. Stranger is the predilection of some speakers of tonal languages to borrow what few grammatical inflections remain in the English language to use in their own, which has none otherwise. Thus the word ‘American’ is used as often as the word ‘America’, likewise ‘Spanish’ for ‘Spain’, though ‘Espanol’ is unknown. My box can’t process Arabic.

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