Saturday, November 13, 2010
Frequent fliers and those who move to the UK frequently pick up a slight British accent. It happened to Madonna and Gwyneth. I find it charming myself. I actually write with a British accent sometimes... you just can't tell.
Over the years I've noted how students who have studied abroad, or spent a lot of time with Mother Teresa and people from India have a little foreign lilt to their voice.
I had a religious priest-friend who pretty much imitated Missionary of Charity speak all the time - a slight British/Indo accent. When I was younger, I adopted it myself for awhile. Everyone knew I must have just come from Europe and must be pretty well educated and maybe even holy. I pretended not to notice their admiration and kept repeating, "Jesus meek and humble...." in order to stave off becoming full of pride.
Once while I was doing the first reading for Mass at a friar's first profession outside of Boston, I used that voice - raising my eyes on occasion, I caught a glimpse of a priest friend I knew watching me. It was almost as if I could read his thought, "Who the hell are you performing for?"
He knew I was a phony.