Pronunciation Test for “Shailesh”

If you can’t pronounce my name correctly then you are not alone. A recent study <*smirk*> found that more than 95% of Americans can not pronounce Shailesh correctly. I’m joking, there was no study. Actually, I’m a living breathing data collector and I can tell you that not many can say my name correctly.

As you can imagine, I’ve heard all kinds pronunciations. My personal favorite is “eye-lashes”.  This came from 5-year old Iliana a few years ago. Her dad was embarrassed when she said it, but  I liked it and wished she would still call me that from time to time. I gave her permission to do so, but she’s too respectful.

I wish people would be a bit more relaxed about the issue. I am not offended if you meet me for the first time and you can’t say my name, heck even if you can’t say it the second time. I can understand that. It’s not a common name in the United States. Even in Nepal, where I’m from it’s not entirely a common name.

So I want to ask my readers (especially those who have not met me or talked to me over the phone) to select the correct way to pronounce my name. I’ve provided options below. Just leave a comment with your guess and I’ll choose a winner next Friday (August 17th).

a) sh-a-lee-sh

b) say-le-sh

c) sigh-lesh

d) shh-ai-leeesh

e) None of the above: __________

As a side note, native speakers of Nepalese will tell you none of these are correct. Which is certainly the case. However, one is definitely more preferable than the rest. Plus, it’s my name and in America you get to tell others how you want to be called.

Next week, how to pronounce my last name – Ghimire!

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