Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
Maybe it's not a cultural thing, but a style thing. I had to reread the last half-dozen diaries Jerome posted. He's fluent, and has idiom down pat. So neither of those are it.

His sentences though. The sentences are correct. The rule of thumb is that a sentence expresses a single, simple thought, and even in his longer sentences, Jerome's not missing this from what I see here. Even in his longest sentences, the subject-predicate-object relationship is always clear. His rhythm is a bit off for me though, and I think that's it. That, and I would expect more linking words than he uses in his longer (lots of those - more than I expected to see there) sentences as well.

Don't get me wrong, I can't fault his writing. It's better than that of most Americans I know. However, if he had named himself Jerome a New York, I think I'd still feel there was a foreign influence there.

Just to test myself, I took a quick glance at Bradbury's memo to Rizzo concerning interrogation techniques permissible under 18 USC §§2340-2340A. (It was handy.) By the opening of the second paragraph: "A paramount recognition emphasized in our 2004 Legal Standards Opinion. . ." and I was saying to myself, yup, that's an American voice. I can hear that officious-sounding voice as I read. It sounds fairly youthful, very clear, and forthright. It's a voice that puts an emotional content behind his text in a way that I recognize. I can't hear Jerome well at all. It's as if he's mumbling. The exception was his "I am a banker. Some of us didn't f*ck up" diary. That one came through very clear throughout. (Jerome's voice is something like..."husky", in case you wondered. Throaty. Not nasal at all.)

"It Can't Be Just About Us"
--Frank Schnittger, ETian Extraordinaire

by papicek (papi_cek_at_hotmail_dot_com) on Wed Apr 22nd, 2009 at 01:18:38 AM EST
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