I have an adult Japanese student who has what I consider a pronunciation idiosyncrasy. I'd like to know if anyone in this forum knows of this pronunciation to be common anywhere in the world. He calls this an example of elision.
For example, I recently heard him say, “There was nothing happening there.” He pronounced the ‘ng’ then pronounced ‘n’ and did not pronounce the ‘th’. So it sounded to me like "happening nere". Other examples he cites as being okay to omit the 'th' are: in there; on that; and on them. I agree with him only on the last one.
He insists this is common native speaker pronunciation. I grew up near San Francisco, California. If this is common native speaker pronunciation, boy, can someone please tell me where people commonly speak like this?!
He’s astute, has been studying English for years, has studied pronunciation pretty darn thoroughly. So I really hate to completely write off what he says, but it sure isn’t the pronunciation I’m familiar with. I'll add that I’ve been listening to native speakers from around the world for the past many years, yet this pronunciation stands out as an oddity.