Yes I have an accent. I grew up in Elizabeth, PA, a suburb of Pittsburgh. My family speaks with an accent that we proudly refer to as Pittsburghese.
Pittsburghese is a regional dialect from the Pittsburgh, PA area. Southwestern, PA to be exact. The dialect has its own vocabulary, grammar, and sound system rules.
Grammar “rules” of my dialect Pittsburghese:
- When using the verbs WANT and NEED we omit the “to be”. For example, we would say:
- “The car needs washed.” Instead of saying ‘the car needs to be washed.’
- “She wants helped.” Instead of saying ‘she wants to be helped.’
- Instead of using the plural pronoun you, we would say YINZ. For example, we would say:
- “Do yinz want to go with me?” Instead of saying ‘Do you all want to go with me?’
Sound “rules” of my dialect Pittsburghese:
- We say short a instead of the long OW. For instance, I would say dahn tahn instead of down town.
- We say the short i instead of the long E in some words. For instance, I would say “My uncles worked in the still mill.” Instead of saying, “My uncles worked in a steel mill.” We would also say “I shop at Giant Igle” (a grocery store) instead of “I shop at Giant Eagle.”
- I use a BUGGY at the grocery store instead of a cart.
- GUMBANDS are used instead of rubber bands.
- We eat JUMBO instead of bologna.
- If the house is messy, we REDD UP, instead of tidy up.
- When it is icy, we say it is SLIPPY, not slippery.