I’ve Just Got a Touch of Redneck Accent Syndrome and Pareidolia. No Worries.
Well, it’s been awhile since I’ve regaled you with one of my self-diagnoses. My most recent one is so depressing, I hesitate to share it with you. But then I thought I should probably warn you about it because you might have it, too.
Most of my self-diagnoses are the result of in-depth internet research. But this one actually came about during an impromptu dinner date with my husband. Technically, it’s the waiter’s fault.
“Do you think he’s from Australia?” Cap’n Firepants asked me after the waiter left with our drink order.
“I’m not sure. It kind of sounds like it, but it’s not quite there,” I said. I am the authority in the family on accents because I am the only person who has traveled to three other countries – four if you include the time I watched fireworks in international waters between the U.S. and Canada. Of course, none of those countries has been Australia, but I did watch Crocodile Dundee and its abysmal sequel.
Throughout the meal, we kept whispering about the waiter’s accent. Finally, after he said, “Have a good evening, mates,” and after I had polished off a top-shelf margarita which made me feel completely unabashed about inquiring into our waiter’s private life, I said, “Are you from Australia?”
To which he replied, “No.” I grinned at the Cap’n. I’m always right.
“But I do have an Australian accent,” the waiter admitted.
He went on to explain that he is from Texas. And has no relatives from Australia. However, a few years ago, he was in a horrible car accident. And when he woke up, and finally started speaking again, he suddenly had this accent. And he’s had it ever since.
“It’s called Foreign Accent Syndrome,” he informed us.
“That. Is. So. Cool!” I exclaimed. Minus the injuries and hospital stay, of course.
Now, it’s quite possible, indeed almost certain, that our waiter was feeding us a pile of bull honkey. But it got me thinking about one of my own neurological problems.
Periodically, my Inner Voice speaks Jeff Foxworthy. It’s well-documented. I’ve been wondering about the cause of this, and now I know.
At some point, Jeff Foxworthy obviously clunked me hard on the head.
What’s depressing is that I didn’t get an Australian accent. And what’s even more depressing is that when I looked up Foreign Accent Syndrome on Wikipedia, it said this, “Thus, the perception of a foreign accent is likely a case of pareidolia on the part of the listener.”
Basically implying that the person who is listening (me) to the speaker (me) is off her rocker.
I guess that isn’t all that surprising.