Building character

Improv class was about characters tonight, and I had a ball.  I have decided it’s my personal mission to make sure that I can pull off a Trinidadian dialect so effective that it can’t possibly be thought to be Jamaican.  Tall order in this town, but I can dream.  And try. And still end up with everyone assuming my character is into ganja and reggae.  Ah, well.

The above should illuminate the fact that I failed at that, despite introducing myself as being from Trinidad when starting up that particular character.  I also realized that I haven’t actually been exposed to the Trini dialect very much in the past couple of years.  I usually have that kind of ear that picks up certain types of accents and dialects. I have to be careful because my speech will tend to melt into whatever the predominant dialect is that I’m around.

That always worried me in the couple of trips I’ve taken to Trinidad.  My ear picks up the dialect, and my brain starts trying to fit in. I fear the assumption that I’m making fun or somehow being disrespectful. I think the quest to fit in, to adapt comfortably is a Squirrel Brain pursuit. I’m protecting my future endeavors through making others comfortable around me.