18 Uncles — The Yooper Accent

If ya don’t knooo, now ya knooo

Mitchell Peterson

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Photo by author.

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I absolutely love a good accent, and I have a theory that ugly accents don’t exist, and it always depends on the person it’s coming out of. A radiant, physically beautiful human speaking calmly or a warm grandmother cheerfully explaining something in any accent is pleasant, no matter the language or how thick and broken the English.

It’s always lovely.

Similarly, whichever accents are typically deemed attractive — Italian, French, Spanish, etc — when spoken by a shallow a**hole is never attractive even if the syllables sound nice.

It’s the energy of the speaker that makes the accent; that’s my theory. But beyond anecdotally at parties with friends and acquaintances from across the world, I haven’t tested it rigorously.

Obviously, some languages are more melodic, others more guttural, and personal preference is a thing, but I swear it’s attached to the person speaking.

All that is to say, I love accents: all of them.

Because I love language, and I could easily let this post drift into my love for how much they’re ever-changing forms of communication that are never static with each generation and new technology and how, if we listen to an interview with a college student speaking from a sit-in from the 1960s, we can immediately hear that it’s someone from a different era because of the intonation and word choice. All of that fascinates me to a level that’s hard to explain.

Maybe I love it so much because I was born in a place with a great accent.

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Mitchell Peterson

Freelance writer who spent nine years outside the US, currently in rural America writing the Substack bestseller 18 Uncles.