N Stands for Knowledge

Snow capped mountain above Reno, Nee-va-da

Snow-capped mountain above Reno, Neh-va-da

298°  Nevada sometimes wallows in ignorance. If you’re in Nevada and you’re bored, find a local and say,

“Neh-va-da is a nice place.”

Without hesitation 9,999 out of 10,000 locals will launch into a tirade about your pronunciation of the state’s name and lecture you on how to say, “Neh-vad-duh.” They will then explain how people sound stupid when they don’t “say it right.”

Nevada is a Spanish word for snowfall, or in this case, Sierra Nevada, meaning snow-capped mountains. The correct pronunciation is “Neh-va-da,” but when we took Northern Mexico away at gun point, we perverted the word and mispronounced it. Ironically, we changed the ending sound from ‘da’ to ‘duh,’ which somehow seems appropriate, considering the passion that locals have over the issue.

It wouldn’t be an issue if locals could accept that Neh-va-da as an alternate pronunciation, but this is not about language, this is about racism. When someone is so insistent that the Spanish pronunciation is wrong, and that the only correct pronunciation is the perverted white man’s version, then it becomes obvious this is about race.

Which is why it’s fun to say Neh-va-da and see how many times you can get a local to say, “duh.” 

Last night's Moon/Jupiter rendezvous

Last night’s Moon/Jupiter rendezvous

90°  Changing the subject, a view of the Moon and Jupiter hanging out together over Neh-va-da.


3 comments on “N Stands for Knowledge

  1. Enjoyed the article, which is amusing even though your phonetic spelling of Spanish pronunciation is slightly off. It’s really “Neh-vah-thah”. Nee would be as in the word “needle”. “Nay” would be too long an “a”, and a Spanish “d” is made with the tongue between the teeth and mid-upper palate, unlike the English “d”, made with the tongue point at mid-upper palate.

    • My mistake on the phonetic spelling. I was using a translation program to hear the Spanish pronunciation and it sounded more like ‘Nee’ than ‘Neh.’ Thanks for the correction.


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