“Sup.” I said.
“Tired.” my friend replied with a yawn.
“What Class we got first.” I asked.
“Spanish.” he replied.
“We mine as well get up dere now.” I said.
“Mine as well its already 8 o’clock.”
This is an example of my normal dialogue when I just get into the school building and greet my friends. I talk like this because it is a relaxing and much way easier to speak. Also, its something I have become accustomed to because this is how most of my peers and I communicate on a daily basis. Mostly because to us its such a easy and leisurely way of speaking to one another. Though we are educated enough to realize that this is not the grammatically correct way of communication in qworking field or profession. This is why during situations in school or the workplace I code switch. I switch my dialogue so the listener will pay attention to the information I am trying to tell.
For example, if I was to have a interview for a job I would not go in the employers office saying “Wats up I’m here for dat job interview jawn.”. Instead I would walk into the office and say “Hello I am Robert Jenkins I’m here for my job interview.”. As you can see this is a huge difference between the way I greeted my friend at the beginning of a school day, and how I speak to people of higher authority. The reasons for making this change is so that the employer does not look at me as something that I am not or to fit in with the kind of workers already with the establishment. For example I could be one of the best people for the job just as James Baldwin said in If Black English Isn’t A Language, Then Tell me What Is? “To open your mouth is to put your business in the streets” and this could cause people to have the wrong opinion of me. They could believe I am a poorly educated young man and is not truly serious about this job or my future. Even though this is completely untrue I could not blame the employer for coming up with that assumption because what else would that kind of speech apply. This the kind of Code Switch that I have to make for many different occasion through out life.
Another reason I might code switch is because I am uncomfortable with the people who are surrounding. Most of the time I use this kind of switch when I am going to new school, Church, or any other place that I am unfamiliar with. I remember the time I was in a similar situation when I was shadowing at SLA.
“Wassup” “Hi” I replied, “You ready for the day.”, “Yes I guess.” I replied. My Conversations with my Student Tour Guide went on like this for most of the day until I got use to the school a little and him. Once I was able to develop this relaxed relationship with my surroundings I was able to switch back to my usual sense of dialect.
A time where I mistakenly for got to code switch was when I was talking to my mom about the cost about of some Watch The Throne Concert Tickets. “How much are for good tickets.”, I said. “The Best Price and Seats I could find was 200.” “Are you serious!” I replied. “Very.” “Damn it” I said. Completely forgetting that I was having this conversation with my mom and not one of my friends in school, but luckily she really catch what I said so I was able to get out of it with ease. This is a situation where using the wrong dialogue could of got extremely ugly.
I change my way of speaking for many different occasion but they each are similar in the reasoning behide it. I do each change to try to either fit or to not be judge by others. I do not do it in the sense of being fake to new people and make them believe that I’m not because I truly am ok with my own personality, but the comfort of not being judged is always a plus. But Code-Switching is not something that I just personally have to do but everyone in the world might have to change their dialogue at some point in time.