Whose Language is it Anyway?!

English is, today, far from being what it once was.. The ‘Queen’s Language!’ People all over the globe have picked it up, given it their distinct flavour and now use it like their own tongue. India too, is not to be left behind, for, irrespective of how much or how little we know it, we SPEAK it! The lingual quirks however, do not go unnoticed:

We Indians have this incorrigible habit of laying emphasis on every phonic sound of every letter of every word we utter. And (as rightly pointed out by Mr. Russell Peters), each one tends to feel that everyone else apart from himself/herself talks in that weird accent that’s supposed to be Indian. But whether we like it or not, we must come to terms with the fact that ALL of us SOUND like that!

And then again we have the cultural diversity within the country further giving rise to vernacular peculiarities in pronunciation and intonation!

Desi Slang
Another idiosyncrasy is that of punctuating sentences (especially the animated ones) with colloquial terms, lending that rustic earthy feel (“ARRE I’m coming NA!”). No matter how impeccably fluent an English speaker may be, if he/she is Indian, the desi slang is inevitable!

The Pseudo Specialists
There are some who cannot speak the language to save their lives, but they do not cease to try. They very predictably acquire an accent to make up for their grammatical deficits, seeming like the verbal equivalent of a fake Nike t-shirt!

The Shakespearean Nightmare
None of the above applies to this exceptional category of hoity-toity speakers who feel the need to use complex flowery poetic language and very obviously literary terms even in the midst of a casual conversation regarding something as mundane as a day at work or an attack of flu. These guys’ expertise is enough to make Wodehouse turn somersaults in his grave and give Rowling a run for her money. They are very aware, not to mention proud, of their superior linguistic skills and follow the “If you Have it, Flaunt it” ideology quite sincerely.

English sure is a funny language.. but we tend to make it funnier..!



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