Sunday, November 12, 2006

A zed by any name would spell as sweet

The work was right, the timing was right, the location was right, the money was alright. The job was exactly what I’d been looking for. I could have done it standing on my head and they would have known it too, when they saw my portfolio. I mailed them my CV, it was rejected almost instantly.

Apparently I had all the qualifications except one: no history of travel to the US, nor a valid multiple-entry visa. For a writing job based in Bangalore. I’ve got used to not qualifying for certain jobs in Dubai based on the colour of my passport, but not qualifying in my hometown for similar reasons was quite a shock. Maybe I should have sued, got them used to that!

But on calmer reflection, perhaps it wasn’t the perfect job. I’d have had to unlearn most spellings and start again. And build up a whole new vocabulary of homely phrases and pointless mutations. In a world where sympathise supposably takes a zee instead of an s, irregardless of my own feelings, I would need to line up all my ducks very carefully if I didn’t want to look like being two vowels short of a sentence.

I wonder if professional writers in other languages have to watch out for words that change character as they cross oceans. My thanksgiving this year will be for having grown up in a country whose English wanders nonchalantly back and forth across the Atlantic. The country seems to have changed a bit lately, but it's the illusions I recall.

I don’t know what the point of this post is. Anger breeds incoherence.

1 comment:

The kaapi editor said...

Apparently when we say aluminium and not aloominum we're using the "liquid 'u'" and being a little flash.

Blog Archive