Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Where are you from?

After introductions, when students find a lull at the end of the first or second class, they ask, "Kim, where are you from?"

My standard response, "I'm from the western part of the United States." (accompanying hand guesture to the left of me)

Follow up question, "What state are you from?"


A pause and an exacerbated look, "You don't know?!"

"No," slower this time, "I-da-ho."

I get a perplexed look, and they ask again, "Where?"

At normal speed, again, I respond, "Idaho. It's in the west, near Washington, Oregon, and California."


Finally, it registers with someone, "OH! eeDAho."

Depending on my mood, I will laugh or smile and say, "Yeah, but in English it's Idaho."

Like our Englishization of Russian names, Ivan versus eeVAN, we change the stress and make the names sound completely different, the Russianization of names can cause a lot of confusion. Especially when you are from a state that sounds like, "I don't know."


  1. That made me laugh out loud! Too fun!

  2. Wait! eeDAho!? Isn't that close to the indian saying that gave rise to the state's name? I remember some such thing from 4th grade Idaho history. (Then again, 4th grade was a LONG time ago.)

    A most enjoyable entry! Thanks for the chuckels.