What can YOU say in six sentences?
His words are the offspring of Bayou mushmouth and a constant, routine imbibing of alcohol that has neither started nor completed in what I can only assume has been years to possibly decades. His dialect on my New England ears provides a baneful challenge, but his gregariousness and cartoonish application of the stereotypical "coon-ass" character I've so desperately sought stay my sweating palm around my tape recorder for what has become a three hour broil on his roofless front porch.
"No-suh, see now dey says all time 'He dronk Cootah Brown,' 'Dey's dronk Cootah Brown,' but dem lil' bois runnin' rount ain' hawdly got no hay on dey cheen, talk bout Cootah like dey knowed eem. Issa dif-ronce 'tween 'lack' an' 'as,' you know, an dey ain' dronk lack no Cootah an dey ain dronk as Cootah was, boi I tell you dat!"
Cooter the Third, as he's insisted is officially his name--though he says there is no birth certificate--sets down his whittling into his lap, tosses his forehead side to side, sweat cascading on the greyed wooden arms of his rocking chair, and leans forward just long enough to lock into my eyes with either urgent sincerity or a flash of madness.
Apparently satisfied I'm following, or his spell of lunacy passing, he returns to whittling and rocking in his chair and concludes plainly, "Cootah dronk cause he ain' had no place he s'pose-a be, no place he b'long, so when you at da point you ain' got no place t'be -- when you get dronk 'nough you cin say you ain' innis worl' no mo', den you come tell me you dronk Cootah Brown."
Just a little exercise in writing dialects. If you need a translation... well, then I sucked it up. But, I'll be happy to oblige where needed.