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July 20, 2012

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This is a great post! I love anything language-related. I am a native and once-again resident of San Diego. But for 18 years, I bounced around, living in North Carolina, Vermont, Pittsburgh, and a few others. 7 locales in 6 states. I've always been one to pick up accents easily, and so it seems like my permanent accent has changed into a mishmash of everywhere I've lived.

I still say "yinz" (you all), like a Pittsburgher. I still drop an "r" from time to time like a good New Englander, and occasionally certain words will have a western NC drawl. Occasionally, this can all occur within the span of a asentence. It's weird, but I kind of like it. I've always liked being somewhat of a geographical outsider.

You have described my experience exactly. I grew up in middle TN as well and probably have a similar accent. I lived in SC for a while and most were shocked when I told them I grew up in TN. When I visited family in Boston I apparently had the strongest, most stereotypical southern accent ever. Now that I'm back in TN I guess I fit right back in.

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