Oh, this is rich. "Swedish is probably one of the easiest languages to learn to pronounce as it is usually pronounced as it is written."
Teach Yourself Swedish, Vera Croghan
Sure it is pronounced as it is written, as Swedes
pronounce it. They have eight vowels pronounced at least 16 different ways. The reason the Swedish Chef always sounded like he was singing is because when a vowel is long, it is really long. As in drawn out. If you don't draw it out right, then it will probably sound like a different word to your impatient Swedish listener. And they will be impatient. You have 20 seconds to convince them you can communicate. Othewise they will switch into their perfect English with a perfect English accent and you will have to wait until you corner an unsuspecting Swedish shopkeeper before you will get a chance to practice again. And that is just the vowels. For example, a simple phrase from yesterday's homework was
Go ahead. Guess how it is pronounced. Nope.
Try yahg yick
. J is always a Y, and G is a Y before an I. See how much fun this is? One time I said to my Swedish mother-in-law,
Jag ska sittar på soffan.
I shall sit on the couch. Or over the couch.
Simple enough, I thought, but it was clear she did not understand me. "Soffan!" I repeated. "Soffan!" I said again, pointing toward the couch.
"Ohhhh, you mean 'sohfffaaan'. You said, 'sewfffaaan', the nickname we have for Santa," she exclaimed.
I could have sworn I said it exactly as she, yet it was different enough to make her think I was going to go sit on a giant elf. I wish this weren't a true story. I must just really suck at this.