15

The huge majority of Americans do both make and hear a difference in the sound of the words "ear" and "year." That fact that you do not hear that difference merely means that one of the sounds does not exist in your native language. My daughter-in-law's native language is Cantonese. I cannot distinguish all six tones; my ear was not ...


15

Most native speakers can hear the distinction. Like Peter Shor said, saying "an ear" and "a year" can help the listener understand which one you mean. Words beginning with vowel sounds always use "an", but words starting with consonants ("y" is a consonant here) use "a". Some examples of "ear" and ...


4

OP here, I got a perfect answer from a friend of mine who masters multiple languages, including Mandarin and English. Here's my translated version of the explanation which he originally said in Mandarin: The reason why you can't hear the difference between "year" and "ear" is that in Mandarin, we don't distinguish the meaning of a ...


3

Part of the problem is that Americans don't universally pronounce the "Y" consonant with the same stress Let me be completely honest, Rachel in her video is pronouncing the "Y" in "year" so short that even I, born and raised in the U.S., had to wind the video back and listen a second time to readily hear the difference. I've ...


2

He says: "Technically, it is a 4-bed, but now cause of licensing and that I can't rent it as a 4-bed" I'm 100% sure about the word 'licensing'. I'm a native British English speaker, this is a familiar London accent. I'm almost completely sure he follows with "and that" which is a colloquial way of saying "etcetera", or "...


1

To amplify @ludant's last point: Here's an illustration of the speech organs from Vowels and Consonants by Peter Ladefoged: The sound at the beginning of year is called palatal approximant (/j/); the place where it is articulated/produced is the hard palate (as shown in the diagram). Unlike plosives (like p, t, k etc) there isn't any kind of closure of the ...


1

Here are the things I recommend: (Personal XP) Watch lots of lots movies and watch them in many ways, like using English subs or in your own mother-tongue-subs and sometimes watch them without any. Watch stand up comedies and learn the cultural references that relates to the context, many people don't understand English because of cultural references. ...


1

In the context of the video, it sounds like a play on the expression "the cream of [something]", which means "the best of [something]": the cream of sth the best of a particular group of things or people In this video specifically, the word "cream" is being used as a metaphor, particularly in the second half of his sentence ...


1

A new shirt at the men's store, a cat-nap in your office chair


1

It depends on what you want to say. In this context "it can add up" means "Over the course of time, this is going to start to get more expensive than we would like." Contrarily, "it can't add up" would be used if you want to say "It must not be allowed to get as expensive as that." Alternatively, "it can't add up&...


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