Devan Crane, the Pirates Abroad marketing intern, writes:
Many people know a few common phrases from the long lists of Australian lingo, such as “G’day” meaning “hello,” but you may not realize how different some phrases really are. After being immersed into the lingo during my North Queensland program, I picked up some vocabulary that I heard frequently and tried bringing it back to the States. Most people are very confused when I try to use these words, but it is one fun thing I brought back from my trip to Australia and keeps the memory alive. Here are a few of my favorites. Test your knowledge and see how many you might know!
Bushie: someone who lives in the Bush (Outback)
Chemist: drug store
Dunny: outside lavatory
Fair go: a chance (“give a bloke a fair go”)
Joey: baby kangaroo
Jumper: pull-over sweater
Kangaroos loose in the top paddock: intellectually inadequate (“he’s got kangaroos loose in the top paddock”)
Mate: buddy, friend
No worries: no problem
Pie: meat pot pie on the go…it is delicious
Thongs: cheap rubber flip-flops
Even though there was no language barrier, learning the lingo made me feel more incorporated into the local culture. Plus, Australians love to listen to Americans, or any other visitors for that matter, try to use their lingo. While I was in Cairns at the program’s end, I met people from all over the world. Sitting down and talking to them helped me realize that the world is a much bigger place than I’d imagined and that there are millions and millions of people out there that I haven’t met yet. Many more lingos await my international travels!