When Chris and I lived in Australia we found a lot of words didn’t mean quite the same as they did in the States. I decided that it was time to take a trip down memory lane and refresh my memory on what some of the fun words were that were common place in Australia and reincorporate them into daily use. I actually do use quite a few of these common ones and thought it might be fun to share them with my readers. After all you never know when you might take a trip and need to know them.
Crack onto—to hit on someone, pursue romantically
Dog’s eye—meat pie
Fairy floss—cotton candy
Kangaroos loose in the top paddock—-intellectually inadequate
Lucky country—-Australia, of course
No-hoper—somebody who will never do well
Oldies—parents “I’ll have to ask my oldies.”
Perve—-looking lustfully at opposite sex
Not the full quid—-low IQ
XXXX—beer made in Queensland—pronounced Four X
Of course there are some words that we use in America that are totally inappropriate to use in Australia. One of those words was “root”. For example the sentence “I am going to root for the Tarheels.” just means that I am going to back them to win the game. In Australia it takes on another connotation and translates to a derogatory way of saying someone is having intercourse. Yikes. I was made keenly aware of how I misspoke when I talked to a competitor in the Paralympics and quickly corrected myself.
Another phrase that takes on a different meaning is “luck out”. In America it means that you got lucky. In Australia it means basically the opposite.
Another term which is somewhat understandable is “bum”. In America panhandlers are sometimes referred to as bums. In Australia this refers to someone’s bottom so calling someone a bum would be inappropriate.
A napkin is a serviette in Australia. When you ask for a napkin there you are asking for one of the sanitary kind which would be a bit embarrassing to have at a dinner table, don’t you think?
Hope you enjoyed this throwback to our days in Australia. I plan to do a few more posts for those of you who find yourselves wanting to learn more about this intriguing country that was the starting point of my blogging life. Stay tuned and don’t forget to comment. It all goes for our June Comments for a Cause.