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Language and dating: You say potato...

After nearly six years in the South, I still don't have an affinity for "y'all."

But things might have turned out differently if I'd found a boyfriend who was fond of the expression.

I thought about language and dating after reading this NPR piece: "To predict dating success, the secret's in the pronouns." It describes what happened when psychologist James Pennebaker recorded and transcribed conversations that took place between people on speed dates.

The outcome?

Specifically, what Pennebaker found was that when the language style of two people matched, when they used pronouns, prepositions, articles and so forth in similar ways at similar rates, they were much more likely to end up on a date.

Pennebaker's research aside, it's hard to ignore the role language and specific expressions play in our romantic chemistry. In moments of extreme annoyance, we like to point out The One Word our partner constantly mispronounces.

Conversely, after some time passes, we often start using quirky words we'd overlook without immersion in a significant other's vocabulary.

Sigh. Let's call the whole thing off.

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