Does El Paso Have an Accent That We Don’t Hear?
I grew up in the Northwest, where we don't have an accent. At least, that's what we thought. We thought accents come from areas like the South, or Boston, or New York. This isn't necessarily the case. I've had people tell me that there is an accent from the Northwest. It seems like regardless of where you grew up, you probably have a bit of an accent.
So what about El Paso? Is there an accent here? Someone posed this question over on Reddit and here are some of the responses.
From what I hear El Paso is similar to the old east LA accent. El Paso people also raise the end of a sentence that almost makes it sound like a question. Juarez has the same upward lilt but in Spanish. This could be where it comes from.
I notice there is a certain inflection. A way of leaning words slightly. Even with people who don't speak spanish. Chart (Shart). Ay(Ey). Little differences that are really cute. I blame the delicious mexican food. It makes people so chill they even develop a special el paso accent.
Kind of varies depending on which El Pasoan you’re talking to. Someone who primarily speaks Spanish or even just spends a lot of time speaking Spanish tends to have an accent that seeps into English conversation.
I’m originally from Tennessee, and one thing I catch a lot of are higher pitches at the end of sentences, especially questions. O sounds also seem a little bit harder and more pronounced as well.
My partner (who's from El Paso) showed this to me (I'm from Ohio). Yes, y'all do. You're just used to your accents that you don't realize that you have an accent until someone says you have an accent.
Same goes for me, with my strange Midwestern accent that can go north to Manitoba, and down to Kentucky at the flip of a switch.
My buddies and I lived in Phoenix AZ for a few years in our early 20's. We were at a bar one night just having a conversation and some strangers came up to us and asked if we were from El Paso. Turns out they could tell just from our "accents"
If you've like, you can check out the New York Times' dialect quiz that covers things like y'all, youse, and more. CLICK HERE to check out the quiz.