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Chapter 32. Delivery > I Should Have Stayed in Bed - Pg. 266

Delivery 266 Solution: I was once privileged to hear the Nobel-laureate writer Isaac Bashevis Singer speak before a large crowd. Born in Poland in 1904, Singer had a very heavy accent. He opened his speech with these lines, "I speek many langwiches, English de best." The audience roared with laughter; Singer had won them firmly to his side. So you have an accent? Check out these statistics: · Nearly 1 in every 10 residents of the United States is foreign-born--this translates into about 26 million people. (This is a result of the highest level of immigration since the 1930s.) Class Act It's important not to get dehydrated during your speech. Make sure you have enough water during the talk. · More than 32 million Americans speak English as a second language. · About 17 million Americans speak Spanish at home; about 2 million speak French; and more than 1 million each speak German, Chinese, or Italian. · About 140 different languages are spoken in America. · More than 100 languages are spoken in the school systems of New York City, Chicago, Los Angeles, and Fairfax Country, Va. If you have an accent, you have two choices: Acknowledge it as I. B. Singer did, or ignore it.