Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 11
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Japanese
      • Home Country:
      • Japan
      • Current Location:
      • Japan

    • Join Date: Jun 2007
    • Posts: 72
    #1

    (Something) it Happens

    I was watching an episode of "7th Heaven" a minute ago, and came across pronunciation that I couldn't figure out. The story was up to the point like this:
    (episode title: See No Evil, Hear No Evil, Speak No Evil)
    Annie and Matt, her son, are carjacked when they pull their car over for a check-up at night. Annie look seemingly unaffected by the incident, and Matt is so afraid to leave their house. The police call them up one evening, telling Annie they have caught a suspect, and want them to go down to identify him in a line-up next morning. But she intentionally doesn't go, afraid. The police eventually reach Matt, and they go to the station.

    After the line-up, she apologizes to one of the officers for not showing up in the first place, saying "Sorry for the mix-up." Apparently she does not tell him the truth. In response to that, he utters what sounds to me like "Might happens." Now, it no doubt has the s sound at the end. (I repeated it about fifty times) The closed caption says "It happens," but often cc shows dialogues with different words, expressions etc. Could it be "My, it happens"? I rarely hear 'My!' in modern conversations except by senior ladies. This is what a young police officer says.

    Incidentally, the officer adds "More often than you know, it happens."

    Thanks,

    Hiro

  1. Offroad's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Brazilian Portuguese
      • Home Country:
      • Brazil
      • Current Location:
      • Brazil

    • Join Date: Feb 2008
    • Posts: 2,817
    #2

    Re: (Something) it Happens

    yes, it could be

    Oh, my [god, dear]! It happens!


    • Join Date: Aug 2009
    • Posts: 1,131
    #3

    Re: (Something) it Happens

    I wonder if the officer said, "Meh. It happens."

    "Meh" is a non-word vocalization indicating dismissiveness, or "shrugging something off" (among other meanings)

    The sense of the remark "Meh. It happens." is
    > "Forget about it. Stuff like that happens a lot."
    > "Don't worry about it. That kind of thing happens."
    > "Whatever. No big deal. That happens."
    > (shrug) "Hey, it happens."
    ---------

    In texting and posting in chat rooms, people write "meh" to indicate indifference, lack of interest, lack of energy to agree --
    "Whatever. I'm not impressed."

    It is pretty much the same as "Ehh" -- another non-word vocalization meaning "whatever."

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Japanese
      • Home Country:
      • Japan
      • Current Location:
      • Japan

    • Join Date: Jun 2007
    • Posts: 72
    #4

    Re: (Something) it Happens

    Quote Originally Posted by Ann1977 View Post
    I wonder if the officer said, "Meh. It happens."
    Interesting! Would people say it without a pause between 'Meh' and 'It,' slurring it, or contracting 'Meh' to a short 'Me,' or combining the two words as if they were one word? In short, would it sound like 'might'? There is no division whatsoever between the words if it's what you suggest. How would you pronounce 'meh,' Ann? As in 'ma' of 'mat,' or 'me' of 'met'?

    Hiro


    • Join Date: Aug 2009
    • Posts: 1,131
    #5

    Re: (Something) it Happens

    Quote Originally Posted by HSS View Post
    Interesting! Would people say it without a pause between 'Meh' and 'It,' slurring it, or contracting 'Meh' to a short 'Me,' or combining the two words as if they were one word? In short, would it sound like 'might'? There is no division whatsoever between the words if it's what you suggest. How would you pronounce 'meh,' Ann? As in 'ma' of 'mat,' or 'me' of 'met'?

    Hiro

    The vowel is a short e, like the one in "met."

    I think the two words ("meh" and "it") could easily fuse into one, but I don't see how it would develop a long i sound like in "might."

    If the sentence were slurred, it would perhaps sound like
    "Me'et 'appens"



    These are similar sounds, all indicating the same indifference or dismissiveness, but the "yeah" here converts them into an unimpressed, indifferent, or dismissive agreement -- or maybe more accurately, indicating too low an interest level to bother expressing disagreement:
    "Meh, yeah" which sounds like "me'yaa"
    "Mmm, yeah" which sounds like "ummyaa"

    These mean
    > "Right, whatever"
    > "Okay, fine, who cares"
    > "I guess so (nominally) but not really."
    > "If you say so"
    > "Whatever you say"

    But none of these have that long i of "might"



    We also have "feh," indicating disgust or distaste (and dismissal)

    I have the impression that all three of these:
    Ehh
    Meh
    Feh
    originated in the Yiddish of New York City, but that is just my impression, and I may be mistaken.
    Last edited by Ann1977; 15-Sep-2009 at 14:39.

  2. Offroad's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Brazilian Portuguese
      • Home Country:
      • Brazil
      • Current Location:
      • Brazil

    • Join Date: Feb 2008
    • Posts: 2,817
    #6

    Re: (Something) it Happens

    They don't sound like might, do they?

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Japanese
      • Home Country:
      • Japan
      • Current Location:
      • Japan

    • Join Date: Jun 2007
    • Posts: 72
    #7

    Re: (Something) it Happens

    If pronounced lightly, or in a hurried way, they would sound like 'might,' wouldn't they? Well, I don't know ....

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Japanese
      • Home Country:
      • Japan
      • Current Location:
      • Japan

    • Join Date: Jun 2007
    • Posts: 72
    #8

    Re: (Something) it Happens

    Now, how would you say 'meh' in normal situations? Do you say 'meh,' then you take a brief pause, and say the rest?


    • Join Date: Aug 2009
    • Posts: 1,131
    #9

    Re: (Something) it Happens

    Quote Originally Posted by HSS View Post
    Now, how would you say 'meh' in normal situations? Do you say 'meh,' then you take a brief pause, and say the rest?
    I think that "meh" is said all by itself a lot of the time.

    If it is said just in front of "It happens," then the speaker has the difficulty of saying "eh - ih" back to back, as the short e and the short i bump into each other.

    So I think they would fuse in that case, coming out like
    "Me'et 'appens"
    or maybe
    "Mehyit 'appens'

    Maybe even "Maaa' happens" where "Meh it" becomes pronounced like "baaa" (what the sheep says), and the final T is dropped.

    Really, these non-word vocalizations are produced uniquely each time, to express minute shadings of affect.

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Japanese
      • Home Country:
      • Japan
      • Current Location:
      • Japan

    • Join Date: Jun 2007
    • Posts: 72
    #10

    Re: (Something) it Happens

    I checked the utterance this morning again. It sure sounds like 'Might happens' --- even 'Mah-it happens.' 'Mah' and 'it' are really so much contracted nobody could tell it's actually two words the first if they have not heard the combination before, and know it is used. I wonder if native speakers can tell what it is. Could it be, maybe, the speaker just held lips and sounded a very short 'Mmm' with an unintended 'ah,' and said 'it'?

    I feel a bit frustrated over the fact we can't find the digital sound clip to paste here, and have you check it.

Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •