Talking British


Today’s post will be slightly different. Instead of reading something I wrote, you get to watch YouTube videos (*gasp*). Now, before you accuse me of betraying all writers, or succumbing to a cheap way of garnering views, or selling out artistically by using an adulterated medium of conveying information… okay, in a sense, I am doing all of that. But hey, who doesn’t enjoy watching YouTube? Especially if they’re entertaining. Even better if they’re laugh-out-loud hilarious. And I’d like to think these videos are pretty good.

For those who read my blog post ‘Accents of the English Language‘ and were curious to know what my accent actually sounds like, well, you’ll get to hear it in a second. Specifically, (I think) what I speak in the videos is one version of my complex amalgamation of accents: a Mid-Atlantic English with British inflections. Don’t worry, I’m confused as well.

Below, I’ve posted all 5 episodes from a YouTube series called ‘Talking British’ which I filmed with my good friend BradfromBradford (links to his WordPress, YouTube, Twitter, Facebook) back in August, and which he has been releasing weekly over the past month. The description is as such: ‘Two non-British British university students discuss.’

Essentially, it features me, a Singaporean, and Brad, an American, who both grew up in Japan and ended up studying in universities in the UK, discussing our various observations about how the British (sorry, we mean the English) speak the English Language, and how the pronunciation differs with American English. Got that?

(Also, Brad has a humorous ‘The British-American Dictionary‘ on his blog which you should definitely check out.)

Before anyone gets offended or thinks we’re making fun of them, please read this warning-cum-disclaimer that is included at the beginning of each video after the title for a generous half-second (which I’ve posted here for your convenience):


Episode 1: Things to watch out for (In which we make our complicated introductions and talk about first encounters with ‘You alright?’ ‘ground floor’)

Episode 2: You can’t ride the fence (In which we talk about the words ‘water’ ‘butter’ ‘gutted’ and argue vehemently that you have to pronounce it one way or the other)

Episode 3: Intentionally mispronouncing words (In which we talk about the delicate relationship between the UK and France, exemplified by the respectively chosen pronunciations of ‘Renaissance’ ‘via’ – although the British got it right with ‘harem’)

Episode 4: Inconsistencies (In which we are baffled by the pronunciation of the words ‘advertisement’ vs ‘Caribbean’ and ‘garage’ vs ‘Farage’ that follow dissimilar patterns)

Episode 5: Fanny packs & tea (In which we talk about fanny packs, erotic novels and tea – is it with food or without food?!)

Agreed or disagreed? Laughed until you were sick or boiling with spite and anger? Let us know!


2 thoughts on “Talking British

  1. I started studying English when I was eleven, and obviously studying English in Japan means studying American English. For the past few years after my English had become a certain level, I’ve been trying to figure out what my accent should be. I tried to sound like British (standard Oxbridge accent to be fair), but I just failed miserably. Now I’m speaking relatively American, but a little bit British, sometimes Japanese kinda weird accent. I hated how it sounds, but I guess it can be my original accent now 🙂 I made a video about this Identity Crisis of My Accent a while ago, so if you’re interested, please check it out! I sound very different now though… Anyway I love your blogs! Thanks for the fun 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hey jackie7cm, thanks so much for your comment! I watched your video – your story sounds very similar to my English accent development and transformation. I think whatever accent you have now is great and you’re right in saying you should make it your original accent! I’ve embraced mine and ever since I stopped being so self-conscious about my accent, it’s made my life so much easier 😀 Thanks for reading, glad you enjoy them!


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