Friday, June 19, 2009

Native speakers

As I continue my semi-immersion in Australian culture, I regularly come across new (to me) Australian slang terms. Most of these examples, encountered over the last month or so, were self-explanatory in context, so I’ve described the circumstances to the best of my recall, in case other non-Australians want to have a shot at figuring out what each one means. (I’ve also provided links to definitions.) I did have to ask for some clarification on the first one, so I could determine just how insulting it was. (Also, my abject apologies in advance for any regional stereotypes perpetuated here.)

On a drive into the countryside
RL: Why don’t some parts of Australia observe Daylight Saving Time?
Local #1: Because they’re a bunch of bogans who think cows can tell time.

At the weekly parents’ coffee morning
Local #2: So my husband saw me come out of the house in my new boots the other morning, and I saw his eyes light up. I made sure I got home before he did, and put on my daggiest tracksuit, just in case.

At the bedding shop
RL: This is my first winter in Canberra. I’m beginning to think we’ll be needing some more bedding.
Local #3: You’re going to need a doona to make it through winter around here!

At Kingston Miniature Railway, when all four children in our party simultaneously realized that the portaloos were directly behind where we were sitting to have elevenses (oops, UK slang sneaking in here)
RL: What are they all looking at....?
Local #4: Oy, stickybeaks! Turn around and give those people some privacy.

Mastering a new language is exhausting sometimes. I think I need to make like my friend here and go take a nap.


Zippy365 said... Best Blogger Tips

I'm trying to figure out how to work these into conversation. I think 'daggiest' is the best!

Roving Lemon said... Best Blogger Tips

Well, you could use 'daggy' to subtly insult someone if desired ('Wow, that's one daggy jacket!'), because no one around your way will have any idea what you're talking about!

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