Since I am deaf, most of my native-language (English) vocabulary comes from books. Consequently, I can walk around pronouncing words incorrectly for years before someone says something. A small selection, in chronological order.
- Vegetable, elementary school. ("veg-eh-tay-bull," as if I were pronouncing "table" like the piece of furniture.)
- Pythagorean, 6th grade. (To be fair, my Filipino-born parents also pronounce it "PITH-a-GORE-ee-yan theorem.")
- Supremacist(s), 8th grade. (I gave a history presentation that mentioned the "Nazi Super-masses.")
- Chef, Champagne, and all other French words beginning in 'ch', age 26. ("The Sheff chose a great shampain to pair with this food.")
- Scheme, last week (one of my favorite CS textbooks is "The Little Sheemer." Sadly, this means I have been butchering the title since age 19 when I first encountered it.)
- Aggrandizing, yesterday (this was pronounced correctly, but with the wrong syllabic stress: I guessed "aggranDIzing," but it's "agGRANDizing.")
Friends, if you remember other amusing "Mel mangles her native language!" moments, let me know. I'm collecting these.