Insanity Crash: Amarikens.

Recently I have been attending what is highly regarded as The engineering course for my industry. It is the Cambell’s Gas Conditioning and Process course, and was two weeks of process engineering detail and industry appliance. Aside from being effectively a two week long holiday from work, so to speak, it was also a very interesting time to be had, rubbing shoulders with many people from various disciplines from around the world (mostly the UK, but some came from further afield).

The lecturer was from America, Kansas to be exact, and was probably the first American that I had properly had a conversation with. I can’t think really of any other with which I have talked at length to, so there you go. Also on the course was a Canadian and later, on the night out, I met the American’s son, but more about him later.

The thing that struck me most about meeting the American was the Americanisms in his speech. We speak the same language, but the differences were surprisingly as bad as the stereotypes make out.

Tempeture – Instead of temperature he missed out the R and said it a lot.
Turbins – Instead of using the real name Turbine, dropping the “magic e” at the end gave a whole new meaning to the headgear, and also gave a rather hilarious-if-you-were-there racist joke about terrorists, equilibrium, and the latent heat of terrorisation.
Gram – One of the attendees was called Graeme, and as such, was referred to as 100th of a Kilogram. I make an effort to pronounce names correctly but this surely is just laziness?
Drug – I wouldn’t believe it if I had not heard it. Instead of dragged he repeatedly used the world drug.

It was not only the rather annoying “new” words he used but also the grammar was horrible, mixing tenses and using such sayings as “more better”, “more safer” and “even more disadvantageous” my head was spinning.

The Canadian however did not use these unhealthy misuses of English but had that amazing accent that replaces “about” with “a boat” and others.

The American’s son was confronted about this by myself after a couple too many pints of beer, and his reaction was brilliant. He went off on a tangent, explaining the voting system in America, his couple of guns, his girlfriend’s father showing him his collection of guns (about 3000) and the Americanisation of Britain, suggesting we were more patriotic than he was after I admitted to eating Burger King and McDonalds more than he has ever. It also transpired that he was particularly racist – an equal opportunity racist by his own admission; he hates everyone the same.

The great colonial experiment is turning out quite nicely.