I have a young friend whose mother was my French tutor for a while, she being French from France. French was therefore his first language, although he grew up in Austin. She made sure of that. Naturally his accent in French was from France. Once, he met some Quebecois at a music venue in Austin, who were instantly offended by his ugly accent because it was the hated accent from the mother country. He just shrugged at their parochialism, but became a little leary of the idea that because you speak a version of the same language you have a common identity.

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I occasionally write fiction and also about creativity, loving, language learning and travel. I’m a longtime painter and reader.

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