Foreign Accent Syndrome

Staff Blog

Staff Blog | Aug 21, 2014

This weekend on Car Talk, we're highlighting one of our favorite Car Talk Moments of all time. This highly entertaining bit includes Tom's complete and utter inability to deliver a story without breaking down into hysterical fits of laughter.

So what's the story?

Fan Shelia sent Tom and Ray a newspaper article about the case of a Massachusetts man who spontaneously developed a French accent, after a car accent. His doctors called it "Foreign Accent Syndrome."

If you missed it, you can hear the brothers defile the French language with their dismal attempts at imagining what a post-collision conversation might sound like when one driver has spontaneously developed un accent Français. [Editor's Note: Students of the French language are Strongly Cautioned; hearing this will undo the work of up to two full semesters at the Sorbonne.]

Foreign Accent Syndrome has stayed in the news since Tom and Ray originally broke the story. A credible media outlet (NPR no less) did a real story about Foreign Accent Syndrome and Foreign Accent Syndrome even had its own celebrity victim, pop singer George Michael! Bonne Chance, George Michael, who we hope by this date has made a full recovery.

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