A couple of weeks ago a Gympie friend and I chatted on the phone; not an unusual event. Having grown up across the street from each other, we’ve been friends for centuries. We met not long after I’d learnt how to talk. At which time she was superior to me in the skill of talking. Old friends we are in all aspects, years included. Towards the end of our lengthy conversation, as we bade each other farewell, she said, “It’s been great listening to you.” Spontaneously, I burst out laughing. Whether her comment was impromptu or not, had I talked her ear off? She joined in with the laughter, and we continued our conversation. Generously, I even let her get a word or two in! After all, being older than I am, she’s had a few more years of talking. I need to catch up!
On an average day, if there is such a thing, I don’t do much talking other than to myself, or when I growl at the TV. Most of my conversing is with Shama, my furry roomie. In turn, she talks back, loudly and clearly. More often she is the instigator/interrogator. She’s probably telling me to shut up. I pretend I don’t understand. Not easily fooled, Shama’s wise to me.
Some voices of various television reporters, personalities, etc., do grate. Frequently I’m annoyed by the mispronunciation of some words. Perhaps I’m behind the times. Maybe I should expand my mingling…chat with more people. Perhaps I’ll talk less with Shama who, by the way, most of the time, makes more sense than many two-legged critters do. Because of my lack of social intercourse, has the spelling of some words been altered during my absence from society? For instance, words such as “important” and “exactly” have been affected. Annoyingly, often the former is pronounced “impordand”, and the latter, “eggsactly”.
I’m not being “mis-chee-vious”. I’m being “mis-chuh-vuh-s”. When in the mood, my express wish is for an espresso, not an expresso. Often the “pruh-nuhn-see-ey-shuhn” of “pronunciation” is incorrectly pronounced…e.g. “pruh-noun-see-ey-shuhn “. At times “prenunciation” is tossed into the mix adding to the confusion. By the way, “et cetera/etcetera” is not “ec-set-er-uh”. The correct pronunciation is, “et-set-er-uh”, etc. Amen! (Pronounced “Ahh-men”!) I guess, that’ll be the next word the “cancel culture” will jump upon…demanding it be altered from “Amen” to “Ahh-women”!
Embarrassed, I admit there are some words over which I stumble. “Phenomenon” and” phenomenal”, for instance, are two tongue-tripping words. When and where possible I do my best to dodge those dodgy words. It’s not a phase I’m going through. The two words faze me, and have done for as long as I can remember. Being a Scorpio, my memory is long.
Another word giving me constant trouble is “Dave”. I can never pronounce the word correctly. It always comes out as “David”!
Foreshore…oops…for sure, I didn’t refuse to put out the refuse. I sed I hadn’t ped. Should I’ve sayed I’d paid? Why aren’t “gave” and “have” pronounced similarly…or “give” and “hive”? As I wander about, I wonder why this is so. It’s good to be kind at all times, or at least try our best to be kind. Why aren’t/aunt “kindle/kindling” pronounced similar to “kind”?
My mind works in mysterious (mis-tee-ree-us) ways. It always has.
Every time I try to say “Bernard Schwartz”, it comes out as “Tony Curtis”. Folk of my vintage will understand. Younger generations…do a Google check. As for Vincent D’Onofrio from “Law & Order; Criminal Intent”…my pronunciation of his surname was hopelessly jumbled every time I’d try to say it, so I gave up ages ago!
La torta pasqualina/Pass-kwah-lean-ah ("Pass" rhymes with mass)/Easter Pie: Wash 370g spinach leaves; put into pot with a little water. Cover; cook over low heat,10mins. Filling: In bowl mix 140g ricotta, 60g Parmigiano Reggiano, 30g Pecorino Romano cheese and 1 egg; add pinch of salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste. Drain spinach; squeeze well to remove the water. Add spinach to cheese mixture. Mix well to combine. Line 20cm round cake pan with baking paper. Then line it with one sheet of puff pastry. Fill it with the cheese and spinach mixture. Make 3 small hollows in mixture, evenly spaced. Crack and place 1 raw egg in each hole. Cut a 20 cm circle out of second puff pastry sheet. Place it carefully over top of the mixture. Close the pie, folding down edges of pastry lining to join up with the disk. Bake in 180C oven, 50mins. Serve hot, or at room temp. It can be kept in fridge covered with wrap, or in an airtight container for 3 days. It can be frozen. If preferred, cut it into slices in order to defrost only the portions needed. Defrost in fridge; then reheat in oven or microwave.Spaghetti aglio e olio/spah-get-tee- ah-lyo-oh-ly-o: Cook 500g spaghetti in boiling salted water. Drain; reserve 1/2c liquid. Heat 3/4c x-virgin olive oil in large, deep pan over med-heat. Add 6 thinly sliced garlic cloves; cook until lightly golden. Add pasta, 1/2 c grated parmesan and cooking liquid; toss 1min or until well combined; season. Serve immediately sprinkled with chopped parsley, extra parmesan and chilli flakes (if using).