E026 Freaky Fricatives

Welcome to English with Kimberley.

In this episode, I want to explore the idea that in English we have a lot of sounds that could be describe as hissing or exploding just like the ‘ssssss’ in ‘hissing’ and the ‘p’ and ‘d’ in the word ‘exploding’.

So, to our first quiz of the podcast.

Which one of these Australian slang words doesn’t have a hissing or an exploding sound?

a) Roo

b) Barbie

c) Mozzie

or d) Cozzie

Shall I repeat the question?

Which one of these Australian slang words doesn’t have a hissing or an exploding sound?

a) Roo

b) Barbie

c) Mozzie

or d) Cozzie

Well, before I give you the answer let’s look at what these Australian slang words mean.

‘Roo’ means ‘kangeroo’.

‘Barbie’ means BBQ as in, ‘What shall we get from the supermarket for the BBQ [barbie] today?’.

‘Mozzie’ means mosquito as in, ‘There are a lot of mozzies around tonight, aren’t there?’.

And, ‘cozzie’ means swimming costume as in, ‘Don’t forget your cozzie!’.

I’ve left a link, with the script of this podcast, that takes you to a video explaining a lot more Aussie slang if you’re interested.

Anyway, let’s get back to the question: Which one of these Australian slang words doesn’t have a hissing or an exploding sound?

Did you get ‘a’ – ‘Roo’. Which contains an ‘r’ sound and an ‘ooo’ sound only.

Although there are some others the ‘f’, ‘s’, ‘ch’ sounds are hissing and the ‘b’, ‘t’, ‘d’, ‘k’ sounds are exploding.

These sounds are also quite difficult to non-native English speakers because they are said quite strongly and often look like you are spitting the sounds out – especially if they are at the beginning of words – which might make you feel a bit rude or dirty. But that’s what we do, so don’t be shy.

OK. Our final quiz.

Which of these words doesn’t contain a hissing or exploding sound?

a) Two/To/Too.

b) Vision.

c) Chin.

or d) Mime.

And again…

Which of these words doesn’t contain a hissing or exploding sound?

a) Two/To/Too.

b) Vision.

c) Chin.

or d) Mime.

Did you get ‘d’ – ‘Mime’, because this word contains another kind of sound I call the nose sound with ‘mmm’ – but that’s another podcast.

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You can also find a script of this podcast, with a useful link to a video on Aussie slang, at www.goaustralia.biz

I hope you have enjoyed this podcast and you’ll join me again.

Link: https://goo.gl/ILXka0