New Mexican Dialect

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Dialect, most people would agree, is the first practical identifier of a person. Yes, there is an unholy amount to be said for visual judgements –physical appearance holds unconscious powers that vocals will never achieve- but when considering true, difficult-to-mask features of a person, one’s speech is the foremost artifact in identification that is, most of the time, genuine. Language is the binding that holds our whole book of life together: your language, and more specifically, your dialect, decides where your page is placed.
Unlike the majority of my peers here at UNM, I did not grow up in New Mexico, and thus am not a native speaker of Standard New Mexican English. I instead grew up in Texas: note that I moved every couple of years and have lived in almost every corner of the state, and so consider my dialect to be more or less blended. However, my primary dialect is still undeniably Texan, and like my New Mexican
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However I never thought that the two dialects –New Mexican and Texan- could be so tangibly different. Apparently, one does not have to even leave the desert to find that their vernacular is out of touch. Upon relocating to Albuquerque from Lubbock three weeks ago, I discovered that in this lexical shift lies innumerable fatal discrepancies (imagine my roommate’s shock when I first asked when we would be attending “supper”. My cheeks still burn at the memory.) Yet the most memorable divergence is undoubtedly the lack of “y’all”. The use of this clunky and rather unbecoming term was always fairly unanimous, even across demographics, in my Texan experience; it has always been a cultural norm for me, uttered without a second thought, much less a poking look. Now, when I’m speaking on the phone to my family 300 miles away, I hear a chuckle from my friends. Never before had I experienced any sort of criticism, joking or otherwise, over this
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