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September 21, 2006 | 4 Comments

Dear Garrison,
I find it very confusing to come into the Mineapolis-Saint Paul Airport and hear that starchy British Voice announcing the arrival of the shuttle tram.

Can't we please persuade the Airport Authority to let Sue Scott make those
announcements in her perfect Minnesota accent?

Twiss B.
Saint Paulite-in-Exile

We have a British lady's voice on the tram so as to prove that we are cosmopolitan folks here and not a bunch of hayseeds. A Minnesota voice ("Okay, then, let's all get on the tram now and hold on cause the thing's about to get going then.") would cause us shame and embarrassment.


I think they use a British accent voice because subliminably it commands your attention, whereas a Minnesota voice just subliminably drives you to Caribou for a cup of coffee.

I dearly want to visit your airport if only to hear just how starchy the British lady is. If I can offer you some comfort, here in Britain we have some announcers - on radio, sat. nav., telly adverts and the like - with American accents to show how up to date and cool the setup is. As a British lady, none too starchy I hope, may I ask you to celebrate the glorious diversity of our language as it is spoken?
If I lived in a community where all the women were strong, the men were good looking and all the children above average I'd be so proud; as it is when I hear an american accent I like to imagine I'm hearing an echo from my bold adventurous ancestors' time when we in Britain spoke somewhat like you do.

Well, that sure beats Phoenix airport with their Stephen F. Hawking voiceovers...

A Minnesota voice in a Minnesota airport would be quite lovely, I think. A bit of regional flavor rather than the electronic or accentless voices we're subjected to would deliver a sense of place. I live near Atlanta, and I wish the recorded voice on the trams in our airport had a southern accent.

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