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Would You Like Some Marscapone with Your Expresso, Giada?

 Could those individuals who pronounce mar-sca-pone be the very same ones who insist on saying ex-press-o?" / :-)

 Now, now, you know the rule – if you want to make fun of somebody, get your own dang Web site. We get to make fun of our readers; you get to make fun of yours.

You may be onto something, though.

We have long thought that the people who say mar-sca-pone are the same ones who say nuk-u-lur. As that is totally outside the food world, we cut them some slack. But perhaps it is a problem inside the food world and has to do with Italian food. We're going to have to conduct a sneaky Italian-food-word-pronunciation test to see if people need general remedial Italian-food-word-pronunciation help.

If that is the case, we'll send them right to the Food Network, where Giada De Laurentiis and Mario Batali are speaking along in the most conversational English and when they come to an Italian word – an Italian food word – they pronounce it like they are suddenly in the center of downtown Rome. No one at the Food Network makes the same effort to pronounce French food words as French, nor have we noticed any proclivity for their hosts to pronounce Spanish or German words with anything other than an American accent. But Italian – you can almost watch the Food Network and come away speaking like a native. It may be the solution to all our problems.

For those who have not a clue what we are going on and on about here, the Italian cheese mascarpone does not have an R in the first syllable, but does have a fourth syllable, pronounced "ay"; the global balance-of-power word nuclear does have three syllables, but the second one is pronounced "klee" and the third "ur;" and the Italian coffee espresso does not have an X in it at all – the first syllable is simply pronounced "ess."

All this has nothing to do with whether you can cook or not – and for this we apologize – it is simply a wickedly clever, slightly high-brow discussion of pronunciation issues, possibly made more bearable by the questioner's wit and the perky little cap on her smiley face.

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