I tried to pronounce that word in French once, in imitation of a French boy I knew slightly who tended to run around my boyfriend's house with no shirt on -- this is not as titillating as it sounds -- but he just laughed at me. "Attention," I said. "No, attention." "Attention." "No, attention." It was like when an Israeli cousin of mine was trying to figure out where in an American airport she was supposed to go, hampered by the fact that Israelis do not distinguish between the long a and short e sounds: "You need Gate Two." "Where do I need to get to?" "Gate Two." "Get to where?" And so on.
Anyway my point is that I'm writing to Doctor Three again and addressing him as "Dear Walter," that's what I wanted to draw your attention to, because OH GOD THE AUDACITY HOW DARE I. Though actually what I'm doing is putting off writing e-mail to him by instead writing a LiveJournal post about a shirtless French boy. I don't fool myself for a minute!