I'm in a bit of a tough spot with my manager. It has nothing to do with work; I appear to be fine in that regard. But she seems to have a slight speech impediment, and I don't know what to do about it.
My manager is a nice woman from New York, although she has no significant accent. She's probably about my age, give or take three years. We get along fine, and although she sometimes talks too much, overstating simple things, it's certainly not a problem.
The problem comes in her pronunciation. The first word that jarred my ears was "onus." Except she pronounced it "onerous." I even looked it up to make sure it wasn't a word I didn't know. Nope. Not a word. Okay, now that's weird. I'm positive I looked it up before and found nothing, but in the last few pages of "The Razor's Edge," there it was. I looked it up again, and it IS a word. I'm sure she meant onus anyway, by the context. She said it several times in one conversation. I can't really correct her, right? I guessed I could've played dumb, and asked what the word meant. I'm never too proud to play dumb. Heck, I'm often not even playing. But I don't think that really would've helped in this situation.
The next word popped during one of our weekly lunches together: "facade," which she pronounces fuh-kaid. At first I wasn't even sure what she was saying. It was like doing an aural crossword. "The building had a really interesting ______ that hid the structure inside." Hmm. I'll give her some credit, though, as I certainly understand how someone might never have heard this word out loud.
The same is true for the next one: Riesling. This is a type of wine, made from the Riesling grape. For those of you reading at home, it should be pronounced reese-ling, not rice-ling as my manager does. Again, though, this is totally forgivable. It is the compounding of all three that gets me on edge.
The problem really comes from within me. Now, whenever we talk at length about something, my ears are constantly on alert for some other weird pronunciation. Not only that, but I'm tempted to deliberately pepper my speech with the proper forms of these same words, just to see her reaction. One of these days, it's most likely going to bite me on the arse.
April 4th Update: Okay, I have few more that I didn't think were worthy of their own posts, but I wanted to record them anyway.
euphorism instead of euphemism
grandiose pronounced gran-doice
And the worst: varocious instead of voracious.
The reason this one is the worst isn't because of the word, but what she said afterwards. She said, "I used to be a varocious reader. Is that the right word?" then continued talking without pause for an answer. I was stunned! I was so busy mentally note-taking on the word that I wasn't even able to respond to the opening. These last two made me decide that maybe she has some form of oral dyslexia.
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