We’ve had so many exchanges, that I don’t recall if I’ve ever shared this with you. Growing up, quite literally on the streets of NYC’s Lower East Side, I had one of the filthiest mouths. And leaving home when I was 14 made it worse. So that when I arrived in San Francisco when I was 22, people there simply were astonished whenever I opened my mouth and every other word out was “fuck” or “motherfucker” as a modifier.

The friends I made, all either from California, the Midwest or The South, literally forced me to relearn English as a second language so that I could get along with people and find work. Which I finally managed to do. However, it retrained my brain and turned me into a language chameleon. Now, ever since, I simply incorporate the local “lingo” wherever I go after I’ve been there a while.

I “talk Southern” now, after having been here a while. People tell me, after having been exposed to a variety of Southern dialects, that my accent is something like East Texas although I’ve never lived there.

How’s them apples, ma’am? Is that a hoot? Hoot, hoot?

But I certainly understand what you’re saying. Despite all that, amazingly, it still somehow grates on me when I hear certain Southern accents because I did travel down here when I was younger and had a couple of very nasty experiences during the 60s I’ll never...never let go of.

Possessor of Paul Newman eyes. Author of the straightforward & strange. “Women zai shuo ba.” Be useful; share what you can; help others always. Doctor of texts.

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