If you’re heading to Australia, you may want to learn a few phrases. While they certainly speak English, they do have a unique vocabulary that makes Aussie’s all the more endearing. Personally, I’m aiming to avoid the root rats, but ratbag might be my new favorite word!
Examples of why you need the vocab – both could be seriously misconstrued!:
– Need some good oil for Oz in April? You need your jumpers and sunnies, but not your thongs.
– For tea or brekkie, take the footpath and hold on to your ankle biter, pass the servo and go half a click. The banana benders are heading that way so just follow them.
The lists are long, but here were some of my favs….
Ankle biter : small child
Apples, she’ll be : It’ll be all right
Arvo : afternoon
Back of Bourke : a very long way away
Banana bender : a person from Queensland
Bathers : swim suit
Bikkie : biscuit (also “it cost big bikkies” – it was expensive)
Billy : teapot. Container for boiling water.
Bloke : man, guy
Bog in : commence eating, to attack food with enthusiasm
Boozer : a pub
Bottle shop : liquor shop
Brekkie : breakfast
Brown-eyed mullet : a turd in the sea (where you’re swimming!)
Budgie smugglers : men’s bathing costume
Butcher : small glass of beer in South Australia – From the theory that a butcher could take a quick break from his job, have a drink and be back at work
BYO : unlicensed restaurant where you have to Bring Your Own grog, also similar party or barbecue
Chokkie : chocolate
Click : kilometre – “it’s 10 clicks away”
Clucky : feeling broody or maternal
Coathanger : Sydney Harbour bridge
Cobber : friend
Coldie : a beer
Come a gutser : make a bad mistake, have an accident
Cook (noun) : One’s wife
Crack a fat : get an erection
Dag : a funny person, nerd, goof
Daks : trousers
Doovalacky : used whenever you can’t remember what something is called. Thingummyjig, whatsit.
Footy : Australian Rules football
Franger : condom
G’Day : hello!
Give it a burl : try it, have a go
Gobful, give a : to abuse, usually justifiably (“The neighbours were having a noisy party so I went and gave them a gobful”)
Going off : used of a night spot or party that is a lot of fun – “the place was really going off”
Good oil : useful information, a good idea, the truth
Good onya : good for you, well done
Goog, as full as a : drunk. “Goog” is a variation of the northern English slangword “goggie” meaning an egg.
Grog : liquor, beer (“bring your own grog, you bludger”)
Hooroo : goodbye
Kangaroos loose in the top paddock : Intellectually inadequate (“he’s got kangaroos loose in the top paddock”)
Mate : buddy, friend
No worries! : Expression of forgiveness or reassurance (No problem; forget about it; I can do it; Yes, I’ll do it)
Oldies : parents – “I’ll have to ask my oldies”
Oz : Australia!
Plate, bring a : Instruction on party or BBQ invitation to bring your own food. It doesn’t mean they’re short of crockery!
Plonk : cheap wine
Porky : Lie, untruth (pork pie = lie)
Quid, make a : earn a living – “are you making a quid?”
Ratbag : mild insult
Ripper : great, fantastic – “it was a ripper party”
Roo bar : stout bar fixed to the front of a vehicle to protect it against hitting kangaroos (also bull bar)
Root (verb and noun) : synonym for f*ck in nearly all its senses: “I feel rooted”; “this washing machine is rooted”; “(s)he’s a good root”. A very useful word in fairly polite company.
Root rat : somebody who is constantly looking for sex.
Rotten : drunk – “I went out last night and got rotten”
Seppo : an American
Servo : petrol station
Sheepshagger : A New Zealander
Sheila : a woman
Squizz (noun) : look – “take a squizz at this”
Stickybeak : nosy person
Sunnies : sunglasses
Tall poppies : successful people
Tallie : 750ml bottle of beer
Tea : supper
Thongs : flip flops
Tucker : food
Tucker-bag : food bag