Sunday, December 14, 2008

Explanation of Pronunciation

This is why I say "khaki" with a ridiculous Boston accent that make the word sound like something you use to start a car (KAH-Ki). In the UK, I make sense!

(from kari on's pants contest)

I'd just gotten the assignment I'd been working for: I was going to work for my company's London branch! Woo hoo!

Unfortunately, I arrived a few days earlier than my bags. And I'm American-sized--I'm over six feet tall. But I was desperate--my first day of work was the next day. So I went into Marks and Spencer's and found the first saleswoman I could find.

"Do you have any long khaki pants?" I asked.

The fine fine cultured British woman looked down her nose at me (impressive as she was six inches shorter) and with stiff jaw and nasal sigh, intoned, "I believe you mean khahh-ki trouserrrrs."

Sure whatever, I just need clothes. I found a skirt that would do, but I was confused by her attitude. I asked my new coworkers the next day, and as I got to the part of the story where I asked for the khaki pants, the British coworkers started tittering.

Turns out, the American pronunciation of khaki — sort of like "cack-y" — sounds remarkably like slang for "shit-filled".

And "pants"? In England, those are underwear.

So I had asked for long, sh*t-filled underwear.

Apparently, Marks and Sparks do NOT carry those.

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