Sunday, January 31, 2010

Elmer Fuddism...

Have you noticed the new commercials by Geico Insurance? The new commercials where the announcer asks, "Can switching to Geico really save you 15% or more on your car insurance?" He then comes back to ask an emphasizing question that makes his point, and in this particular commercial, asks the follow up question; "Does Elmer Fudd have trouble with the letter 'R'?" Poor Elmer is then shown in a cartoon being chastised because he can't say the word wabbit.

I only mention this because as a child, I too was stricken with Elmer Fuddism. Yup that's right, a guy, who's first name starts with the letter "R" (Ronnie, pronounced Wonnie in Fuddism) couldn't say his own name properly. That time machine I spoke about in my very first post, has taken me back to this small traumatic event of my childhood. When I told my wife and daughter in law about it, they just laughed. I told them it wasn't funny, I had to go to special class and everything! They didn't care, they still laughed at me. Little wotten, Wonnie, went to speech class to learn all about them wascally wabbits. Trust me, I know how Elmer Fudd feels.

When using the letter "R", it is mostly pronounced using the "er" sound. So I was sent to speech class to learn how to pronounce the "er" sound. I remember the speech teacher would squeeze my cheeks, and make a face like fish when she would use the "er" sound. I can't remember when the "er" sound just came naturally. It was probably when I started cussing, if you recall there are a couple of words where the "er" sound is really emphasized.

I asked a few folks if children are still sent to speech classes when they are young to learn how to speak letters and words properly. Yup, it still seems like Elmer Fuddism is an issue, but they don't call it that. Wouldn't be politically correct, I guess. It's called speech therapy for children, and in particular teaching articulation for those children having trouble with saying certain sounds or words correctly. The class worked well for me, no one knew about my specialized training in public speaking at such an early age until I told them about it. They still can't stop laughing about it either. Some "secwets" are just better kept to oneself.


1 comment:

Charlie said...

I'm sure this wasn't a laughing matter, especially when the other kids made fun or bullied you. Kids can be mean little bast**ds.

I like your avatar, but I have to admit that buzzard looks more like a chicken. And isn't the second-hand smoke bad for it?