I was joking around with Debbie, one of my cast mates in Funny Little Thing Called Love. She told me that she was going to take a break from theater after our show closed.
Except she said, "Thee – A – Ter". With the emphasis on the A.
“Debbie,” I teased. “You are not taking a break from Thee – A – Ter. It’s thee-uh-ter. Soft A.”
We debated for a few minutes the
I then asked her how she pronounced the word i-n-s-u-r-a-n-c-e and she, of course said "INsurance". And I informed her that the correct pronunciation is "inSURance".
I continued. “And how do you pronounce the word c-e-m-e-n-t?” I was enjoying myself.
“It is SEEment,” Debbie said, beginning to get annoyed at my cockiness.
“Si-ment,” I corrected. "Unless, of course, you're Elly May Clampett."
“WAIT A MINUTE,” Debbie said. “I’ve been meaning to tell you that you pronounce “realtor” wrong on stage EVERY NIGHT.”
“No I don’t!” I replied, defensively.
“You put an extra A in it!!!” she said. “You say, realator.”
“That’s how it’s pronounced,” I said. “Realator.”
“But it’s spelled r-e-a-l-t-o-r.” Debbie said, smugly.
I’ve been saying "realator" all my life. Is it a New York thing? Or a Wisconsin thing?
Or just a Lou thing?
Like when I pronounced foreign ‘for-ee-gin’ in 5th grade.
OMG! How humiliating!
I had pronounced the word incorrectly six shows in a row! And I was just learning of the transgression minutes before our last performance.
I could fix it. I WOULD fix it. Better late than never, right?
As I waited offstage for my cue I repeated the words, “realtor, realtor, realtor” in my head. Debbie came up behind me and whispered, “realtor.”
I made my entrance, silently repeating the words “realtor, realtor, realtor”.
Then came my line:
“I went to a condo open house the other day and guess who the reala..real. reala.realtor turned out to be?”
I said it just like that.
Oh well. It just proves that anything can happen onstage.
After all, it is live thee-A-ter.