When I was in college I spent a semester in Italy and fell in love with a beautiful Italian boy. He and I spoke Italian together, but he loved to practice his English and I didn't mind because his utterly adorable accent could practically take the place of foreplay. He was a handsome guy, and I loved him, but if I were to be completely objective, I'd say that if you stripped away his Italian-ness -- the accent, the style, the personality -- he wouldn't have stood out in a crowd.
Take an ordinary-looking guy, give him an accent -- say, Scottish or Aussie -- and pow! Instant hottie.
But why are accents so sexy? It's not just the exotic sounds, the twist given to ordinary words. I think it's partly visual. Have you ever noticed how different languages make the mouth move in different ways? Next time you're with a man from another country, watch his lips. They'll move in unfamiliar patterns that make you wonder how those lips would feel on your body. An accent makes you ask what else is different, what does that man know that the guys in your neighborhood don't.
|Italian actor Raoul Bova/Photo from Vanity Fair by Luca Babbini|
|Scotland! Gerard Butler!|
So what about you? What's your favorite accent?
Juniper Bell's latest release is Beautiful Obsession.