A dialect vlog

I’ve decided to take part in the ‘Dialect Vlog’* craze so today you get to see me on camera. Yay!

Here’s how it works: I have a list of words to read and a list of questions to answer. The idea is that someone studying linguistics can map the differences in dialect from one region to the next. I’ve included the words and questions under the video for you to follow along—or for you to use in creating your own Dialect Vlog.

[I’ll spare you my ramble about the differences between languages, dialects, and accents—but please know there are differences between the terms.]

Here is a Dialect Vlog from a woman who grew up in the Pacific Northwest! For those linguists in the house who may wonder what the deal is with my dialect/accent, it should be noted that whilst I grew up in a rural community in Central Washington, I suffered through a couple years’ of speech therapy as a child, lived in Scotland for a spell as an adult, married an Englishman, and have a daily influence of British English through my addiction to EastEnders and regular conversations with family and friends in the UK. So, I offer my apologies for skewing the results!

Aunt, Route, Wash, Oil, Theatre, Iron, Salmon, Caramel, Fire, Water, Sure, Data, Ruin, Crayon, Toilet, New Orleans, Pecan, Both, Again, Probably, Spitting image, Alabama, Lawyer, Coupon, Mayonnaise, Syrup, Pyjamas, Caught

  • What is it called when you throw toilet paper on a house?
  • What is the bug that when you touch it, it curls into a ball?
  • What is the bubbly carbonated drink called? soda
  • What do you call gym shoes?
  • What do you say to address a group of people?
  • What do you call the kind of spider that has an oval-shaped body and extremely long legs?
  • What do you call your grandparents?
  • What do you call the wheeled contraption in which you carry groceries at the supermarket?
  • What do you call it when rain falls while the sun is shining?
  • What is the thing you change the TV channel with?

If you decide to take part and post your own dialect vlog, please let me know so that I can check out your video!

* I don’t know who started the concept or created the questions and word list and to be honest, I’ve not tried to search that hard. If you know where this started and can provide me with that information, I am happy to give complete credit where it is due.

6 thoughts on “A dialect vlog

  1. Living in America is weird. Well-spoken English people now sound incredibly posh and reticent to me, whilst many English words sound weird and unsophisticated.

  2. I could hear the Washington part of your accent when you said Alabama. I say words with a short “a” in the middle, kind of weird. LIke the word bag comes out more like beg. My husband makes fun of me. But I met someone else from Washington when we lived Rhode Island and he said those words the same way. In RI they called both a grocery cart and a stroller a carriage. IT’s interesting to hear the differences. You have a lovely lilt to your voice that makes it fun to hear you talk.

  3. Good thing I listened to your vlog. It explained some odd disagreements in my house! In the UK daddy long-legs refers to a crane fly, so that explains why I’ve had arguments about spiders and stuff…

    I don’t actually have a name for that arachnid the question asks about.

    I could hear the Scottish influence on a few words 🙂

  4. It’s funny how people hear my voice differently because to me I sound exactly like anyone else from the PNW! But I guess that we always here the differences in people’s voices, rather than the similarities!

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