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Saturday, July 23, 2011

That's an Interesting Accent You Have There

Can we just come clean here and talk about “Fargo”?

“Fargo” is a movie put out by Minnesota’s favorite sons, Joel and Ethan Coen.

Have you seen this movie? The accent in “Fargo” is meant to be representative of a Minnesotan accent but it is not, my friends, how Minnesotans sound.

I don't, anyway.

No, really.

Oh, ja, ya know, we got dem guys up dere on de Range, huntin’ dem tirty-point bucks, but dose guys, dey’re not troooly representative of de folk down here in de Cities.

Being a Minnesotan comes in handy, though, when traveling, particularly if the government is doing something particularly unsavory.

I've been known to claim to be Canadian.

Look at ‘em. All friendly and cuddly up there, the little non-gun-toting, law-abiding Canucks. You could just eat them up they’re so cute.

Everybody loves the Canadians.

A number of years ago, I went with my son and my parents to Mexico for what in the U.S. is a long vacation: two weeks.

Two weeks! It’s like being retired.

If you ever get to Puerto Vallarta, which is where we went, one thing you’ll notice is that no one there is overweight; and if you do happen to see someone who is overweight, they’re either Americans or Germans.

I’m sorry, but that’s the way it is.

We were getting into a cab, the four of us, to go to dinner one night, when another family of tourists got into the cab next to us.

Our driver called out to the other driver. The other nodded sorrowfully and our driver laughed.

Four years of high school French are of no help when you’re eavesdropping in Spanish; and being the nosy sort, I asked our driver what he said.

He blushed just a bit and then said, “I tell him, ha ha! You get the fat ones!

By this time, the other taxi had pulled in front of us; and we all watched as its back end sagged perilously close to the tar…

And then we saw the taxi driver's face in the rear view mirror, and you could see that it had suddenly occurred to him that perhaps we were Americans. None of us were overweight, but we do have a suspiciously U.S. look to us…

From the backseat, my father, the king of nuance, notices him noticing us.

“No worries, eh,” my dad grins into the mirror. “We’re Canadian.”

41 comments:

Eva Gallant said...

Are there no fat Canadians?

Daisy said...

I loved the movie "Fargo" and I'm really disappointed that you don't speak like that! :-) Well, I'm originally from NJ and I'm not on toitty toid street anymore. At my brother's funeral some years ago I couldn't understand a word his NJ friends were saying! ... cause I'm CANADIAN! Hug me! I'm "chubby". Wish things were as rosey as you picture. We also have our nut jobs, gun envy guys who think violence is an solution, and a gov't strangely copying the choices that got the US into it's present difficulties.

Shelly said...

I really enjoyed Fargo. I also understand about accents, but mine is rather chameleon-like. Unconsciously, I start to sound like whomever I am speaking with. Texan is my default accent, though.

Sausage Fingers said...

You need to get the McKenzie brothers lingo down next time
Take of you hoser, eh...
good luck

IWASNTBLOGGEDYESTERDAY said...

lol,there are some aussies who like to think we don't have an accent,it makes them cringe lol

are canadians huggy?

That gentleman's lady said...

love it!

rather funny that he told you exactly what he said too...

Leenie said...

You gotta admit that Minnisoooda accent made the movie. You betcha. Go Canada! the best kept secret for about everything except hurricanes and humid sweaty summers.

Oilfield Trash said...

There are not many fat Canadians. I know.

mybabyjohn/Delores said...

Yes, there are fat Canadians.
How sad is it that someone from the Excited States prefers to represent themselves as Canadian?
I have to say, though, that I have never been tempted to claim US citizenship.
Honestly though, I think anyone in the world could claim Canadian citizenship as we are the true melting pot...Every nationality is represented in this country...we aren't really a country at all, just a gathering place. A gathering place for people who want to live in peace.

ellen abbott said...

oh, that one made me laugh. I love Mexico and being so close it is where we usually go for vacations. besides the whole fat thing, there is the impatient and rude American thing. One trip to Cozumel we were relaxing in the lobby waiting for some reason when this rude strident American woman was complaining loudly about how long she was having to wait while the guy who arranged for jeep rentals did his arranging for the people in front of her. granted he was moving at a slow pace, a normal pace for a mexican island in the caribbean, not the harried triple pace that is expected and demanded in the US. She was embarrassing me. I wanted to tell her to chill out and enjoy the water and palms and sand and flowers and have a beer and relax and for god's sake stop being so rude!

Beach Bum said...

Truth be told most Southerners do not sound like the movies and other media most often present them. Don't get confused, I'm not saying most of my fellow Southerners are smart, far from it, any group of people that claim a special relationship with Jesus but continue to vote for the slimy shits that dominate Congress are missing more than a few IQ points.

As for Canadians I think they are a great people except to the French-Canadian blowhard that wanted to lecture me on Cuba once even after I told him several times I agreed with his position. I was so irritated I was tempted to toss him off the side of the cruise ship we were on but that probably would have banned me from further Disney Cruises.

Clipped Wings said...

You are so funny!

Drake Sigar said...

Canadians are welcome everywhere.

jenny_o said...

Too funny! But you are being overly generous to Canadians - we have every sort here just like everywhere else :)

jenny_o said...

...and I would like to say I'm sorry for spilling the truth about that, and I'm also sorry for dissing my fellow Canadians (just the ones who deserve it) :)

jenny_o said...

... and sorry about hijacking your comments ...

lgsquirrel said...

It's a good idea to have a Canadian flag on your backpack when traveling in many countries.

Vapid Vixen said...

As a Canadian living in the U.S. I can tell you that we are not, in fact, welcome everywhere. I've yet to make it through a full work week without someone making a "stoopid Canadians" or "damn Canadians" comment under their breath. Still not sure if they're trying to be funny or if it's sincere. What are you gonna do, eh?

jabblog said...

Wonderful! I'm picking up more about American accents through blogging than ever I would otherwise - 'window seal' for 'windowsill' and the like. My son had to re-pronounce when he lived in NYC - for example, English pronunciation of 'tuna' had to be replace by 'toonah'. My Canadian niece gets cross when people think she's American - ummm, it all sounds the same to me, apart from Brooklyn and Texas;-) . . . apart from 'eh' which she (Canadian) never says but her late father (British) did!

Pat said...

Now I'm confused. I thought you were Canadian. I've always like Canadians.

Jeannie said...

As a Canadian who has enjoyed a favourable response from many places, I'd like to say that we are quickly becoming assholes like many other nations and it is very disappointing. Many of us are fat too. Horrifying.

Susan in the Boonies said...

Overweight Americans are no harder to load into a chipper in Fargo than overweight Mexicans or Canadians.

That's all I'm sayin'.

Hilary said...

We Canadians feel the love. ;)

Daisy said...

Memorable scene and so true, Susan in the Boonies .... eh? ;-)

vanilla said...

Fargo? Oof dah.

WrathofDawn said...

Have watched that movie several times just to hear Frances McDormand's version of the accent. Oh ja, Norm.

We have our fatties. But they're HUGGABLE fatties, eh?

The worst is when Canadian comedians try to do one of the Newfoundland accents. It's downright painful. First of all, they don't realize there's more than one accent on this island, including the one that sounds exactly like the rest of Atlantic Canada. Secondly, they don't understand the difference between archaic grammar constructs and just plain bad grammar. Dere're right stunned, b'y.

And that's MY rant for the day.

Joshua said...

I don't know. My grandfather was born, raised, and buried in Fargo. He sounded just like that.

Mandy_Fish said...

"Say Ya to Da U.P."

That's a Michigan bumper sticker. They talk a little like that Fargo movie in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.

Maybe it's an accent people pick up when they live near moose?

Or someone told me it's from all the Finnish immigrants up 'dere.

Camille said...

You crack me up! Love the movie Fargo - one of my all time favorites - and you've confirmed what I've always suspected - the Cohen brothers stretched it a way too thin on the accent front.

Ovah he-ahhh in New Hampshaaa, we can also be a tad sensitive to a "flatlanders" imitation of our supposed "accent". Screw em'

It's nearly ten pm and it's still 88 friggin' degrees outside. What's up with that? It almost has me wishing for fall. GAH!

Belle said...

Us Canadians actually own more guns per capita than the U.S. (I learned that in a Michael Moore move) but we have a lot more rules for them. We are the type to obey rules. :) I think we are huggy and nice too.

mapstew said...

I love everyone from Canadia!

As for movie accents, Tom (makes me want to cut out my own prostrate!) Cruise does the most accurate 'Irish' EVER in Far And Away! NOT!

mapstew said...

PROSTATE! (See what that fecker does to me?!!) :¬)

xxx

Kavi said...

If two weeks feels like retirement, I wonder what three will seem to you ! Which is what I got in the US !

US citizens i am told, dont have to get a visa to get to Canada ! Well, i guess, its ok to stake claim to the nationality once in a while ! ;)

Burkulater said...

Hahaha! Love it! We live right on the border (US side) but we often tease our Canadian friends abute their ehs.

lisleman said...

You wrote yet another funny one. They just keep coming. Fargo was a great movie as is most of the Coen brothers work (why didn't you mention his brother Ethan?)
Your dad is/was a funny man. The falling apple and the tree thing I guess.

It would be an honor to have you add this or any of the many funny posts to Lisleman's Left-over Laughs - start Sunday (actually late tonight)
thanks

River said...

I'm a German-born Australian and in my family tree album the only skinny people are the kids. I know a few Germans not related to me and they are all on the "bit more than plump" side too.

Mamma has spoken said...

I feel your pain, I live in KY but I don't have the southern accent. My daughter in law is from New Jersey and when I first met her I thanked God and her that she didn't sound like she was from NJ. She had no clue what I was talking about until she watch and eposide of Jersey Shores. She was almost into tears, looked at my son and asked, "Is that how people see those of us from NJ? Is that what your mother meant?" Scott laughed because she had no idea of how people from NJ are perceived.

That Janie Girl said...

So. If I move to Canada, I'll get skinny?

I'm freakin' packing right now!

And it has to be cooler!

K A B L O O E Y said...

I looooved Fargo. And Marge and Norm had a hell of a good marriage. Salt o' the earth and all. And he made her breakfast.

Karen McQuestion said...

KABLOOEY--I noticed that Norm made her breakfast too! My kind of man.

I live in Wisconsin where I blend size-wise, but when I go to New York, I noticed I'm sort of on the fat side, comparatively speaking. If I went to L.A. I suspect I'd be obese. I think I'll stay where I am for now.

Pat Tillett said...

I LOVED Fargo. The dialogue was awesome (with or without the accent). I've been to Canada several times and there are some hefty folks up there also. Oh wait, maybe those were the moose!