Me Talk Pretty One Day | Page 5 of 132

Author: David Sedaris | Submitted by: Maria Garcia | 532305 Views | Add a Review

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interest in football or basketball but had learned it was best to pretend otherwise. If a boy didn’t care for barbecued chicken or potato chips, people would accept it as a matter of personal taste, saying, “Oh well, I guess it takes all kinds.” You could turn up your nose at the president or Coke or even God, but there were names for boys who didn’t like sports. When the subject came up, I found it best to ask which team my questioner preferred. Then I’d say,

“Really? Me, too!”

Asked by the agent which team I supported, I took my cue from her red turtleneck and told her that I was for State. “Definitely State. State all the way.”

It was an answer I would regret for years to come.

“State, did you say?” the agent asked.

“Yes, State. They’re the greatest.”

“I see.” She led me through an unmarked door near the principal’s office, into a small, windowless room furnished with two facing desks. It was the kind of room where you’d grill someone until they snapped, the kind frequently painted so as to cover the bloodstains. She gestured toward what was to become my regular seat, then continued her line of questioning.

“And what exactly are they, State and Carolina?”

“Colleges? Universities?”

She opened a file on her desk, saying, “Yes, you’re right. Your answers are correct, but you’re saying them incorrectly. You’re telling me that they’re collegeth and univerthitieth, when actually they’re colleges and universities. You’re giving me a th sound instead of a nice clear s. Can you hear the distinction between the two different sounds?”

I nodded.

“May I please have an actual answer?”

“Uh-huh.”

“ ‘Uh-huh’ is not a word.”

“Okay.”

“Okay what?”

“Okay,” I said. “Sure, I can hear it.”

“You can hear what, the distinction? The contrast?”

“Yeah, that.”

It was the first battle of my war against the letter s, and I was determined to dig my foxhole before the sun went down. According to Agent Samson, a “state certified speech therapist,” my s was sibilate, meaning that I lisped. This was not news to me.

“Our goal is to work together until eventually you can speak correctly,” Agent Samson said. She made a great show of enunciating her own sparkling s’s, and the effect was profoundly irritating. “I’m trying to help you, but the longer you play these little games the longer this is going to take.”

The woman spoke with a heavy western North Carolina accent, which I used to discredit her authority. Here was a person for whom the word pen had two syllables. Her people undoubtedly drank from clay jugs and hollered for Paw when the vittles were ready — so who was she to advise me on anything? Over the coming years I would find a crack in each of the therapists sent to train what Miss Samson now defined as my lazy tongue. “That

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Alice
Great book, nicely written and thank you BooksVooks for uploading

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