December 15, 2011
On the 6:12PM. In my corner seat and got invaded by the Desi brigade of IT staff coming from a financial firm. As each of the four gentlemen hail from different parts of India, the unifying language of conversation is English.
Thing is, the one gentleman sitting across the aisle – it seems I took his seat, though I was here first – seems to believe:
1) articles (the, a, an) are optional in a sentence and
2) the best way to get one’s point across is to be the most emphatic, both in volume and pronunciation of each … and … every … consonant of every word uttered.
Each syllable has equal, in many cases, random, stress. Not that I mind at all. I am trying to guess the region of origin (Tamil, Kanada, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, etc.) based on accent and topics of conversation – oh and mustache level.
Usually, the level of volume being generated by these four can be attributed to excessive consumption of alcohol, yet I cannot detect any wafts of the “medicine”.
Try this at home. Veg-eh-ta-bull = vegetable. Each syllable has the same emphasis and weight. He must be Tamil-Ian. The quietest of the group sounds like he’s from Bombay or Delhi and has been speaking the Queens English since childhood. He’s quiet because he’s asleep. Perhaps booze IS somehow involved.
One has disclosed that he’s from Kanada (he’s Kanadian). This is a lot like playing “Clue”.
So – final tally – two Tamilians, one Kanadian, and one UPer who’s asleep. I figured out the last one because two of the group broke off into a separate conversation in the mother-tongue, leaving the Kanadian to nod off and UPer to continue snoozing. The brunt of the Spoken English conversation was about deals recently scored from Desi Restaurants in the area.