Even the most worldly people sometimes come across words they aren’t sure how to pronounce. It’s a state of not-knowing that is fraught with anxiety and insecurity. No one wants to be caught out in an embarrassing pronunciation blunder. Luckily, the internet is there to help. If you Google something like “how to pronounce quinoa,” the first hit will likely be a video from the YouTube channel PronunciationBook, a collection of short clips that blandly—and a little creepily—tell you how to pronounce tricky words in American English.
Into this market for pronunciation help stepped the devious mischief-maker who created the copycat channel PronunciationManual, which looks very similar to PronunciationBook, but gives pronunciations that are wrong. Not just wrong, though—wrong in a way that touches on exactly what it is about the words that make them so annoying. So wrong, they should be right. Let’s all start saying these 15 words in their Pronunciation Manual form.