It#039;s pronounced dawgs

Published 12:00 am Monday, November 3, 2003

While perusing my favorite Saturday afternoon program - college football - I couldn't help but notice that some of the announcers just can't get the pronunciation right.

Now I know I'm not the best one to be criticizing others for the way they talk (have you heard me when I get excited?), but I do know the difference between a dog and a Doug.

An announcer on a major sports channel was giving the updates on scores from around the country. When he gave the update for the Georgia vs. Tennessee game, I was completely baffled. It sounded, to me anyway, just like he said the Dougs were taking on the Vols Š does that make any sense?

I'm sure he knows the difference, but a Doug is a person, it's a name. The dogs, pronounced dawgs are the football team from Athens.

A few years back, the same Georgia Bulldogs were taking on the Arkansas Razorbacks (the Hogs) in the Poulan Weedeater Independence Bowl in Shreveport, La.

Needless to say, the announcer pronounced it as if the "Dougs were playing the Hugs."

And we won't even get into the whole Poulan pronunciation.

But it's not just in college football where this happens, although that's when it's most apparent.

People routinely say the "Dougs" instead of "dawgs." I've also heard the "crick" instead of the "creek" and the "rouf" instead of the "roof."

I don't know, maybe it's just my "Southern dialect" that makes the way everyone else talks seem funny Š but I really think in this case, especially with the "Dougs" or "dawgs" situation, I'm right.

Dialects are different everywhere, even when we speak the same language. US. citizens and Canadians speak in relatively the same accent, or dialect, but the differences in certain words are uncanny.

Take the word "out" for example. We say "out," and it sounds a lot like "owt." Canadians, on the other hand, say "out" as "oot."

Same word. Same spelling. Same meaning. Way different pronunciation.

And let's not even get started about the way the British say "schedule." For them, there's no hard "c." Instead, it's pronounced "shedule."

Again, spelled the same, same meaning. Way different pronunciation.

I've traveled to different regions of the US, and I must say, simply hearing the different dialects can be the best part of a trip. People in Minnesota, they really do talk like Jesse Ventura (it's the Scandinavian thing), and in Chicago - it really is a hard "c" an a lot of the words.

But, you don't have to travel across the country to hear different dialects. Simply travel the South and you'll discover each of us speaks a little differently. Believe me, it's easy to spot someone from Kentucky and Arkansas. And Louisiana, well - they don't come any easier to identify.

Shoot, take a trip through Alabama and you'll find that once you cross the Alabama River in Montgomery headed north, people talk a whole lot differently than they do in these parts. And as for Mobile, well, let's just say they're very "proper" in the way they speak - almost like they have their own language.