The one thing that unites all Australians is our love for confusing the heck out of foreigners, and also Fairy Bread. Some things we do seems so normal to me that I forget it’s a shock to any newbies.
Like announcing ‘I’m just going to throw my thongs on’ in a crowd of Americans, or telling someone outside Australia not to be a ‘stickybeak’ and having them stare at me like I was crazy.
British TikTok user, Jordana Grace, is currently living in Brisbane and has taken to the platform to remind us just how much non-Aussies should be warned about before making the choice to holiday or live here. And there’s a lot.
#1 On adding ‘o’ to the end of words and bottle-o’s
“Australians think they shorten words by adding an ‘o’ to it — ‘Hey Johno, let’s go to the servo on the way to the bottle-o this arvo’,” points out Jordana. And, well, she’s not wrong, but she did forget that we sometimes make it an ‘ee’ instead, like hand sani.
Side note, apparently the Brits think it’s weird we have separate stores selling only alcohol. I’ve got to tell you though, surely that makes WAY more sense than having a legal drinking age yet selling grog at your normal grocery store.
#2 On the meaning of ‘yeah nah’
“[My] favourite Australian saying: ‘yeah, nah’,” says Jordana. “I think it means no, but in New Zealand they say ‘yeah nah yeah’, so I don’t know”.
I admit this IS confusing, but obviously you go with the last sentiment. ‘Yeah nah’ is a no, ‘nah yeah’ is in the affirmative — simple.
#3 On our extreme chill with dangerous animals
“It is not easy to scare or shock an Australian,” she proclaims. “To be fair, if you’ve grown up in a country where literally everything will kill you, what will scare you?”
Ok, this always confuses my because yeah we have some dangerous and odd-looking creatures — but other countries have huge angry bears, and lions that can hunt, so like, surely that’s way worse? Except crocodiles, those things are nasty.
#4 On how much money you will spend in Kmart
“They warn you about the spiders and the snakes and the blistering heat, but they don’t tell you about Kmart”.
This is dangerous for literally everyone, not just tourists and expats. Australian Kmart is heaven, I refuse to hear otherwise, and it’s super easy to go in for one thing and come out with 10 more.
#5 On our choice of party music
“When it comes to parties you think Australia is like everywhere else: great conversation, great drinks. But when it comes to the music, that’s when the party really starts”.
In particular, Jordana notes The Horses by Daryl Braithwaite and — a personal favourite of my own family’s — Eagle Rock by Daddy Cool. However Jordana also said that every male in the room will pull their pants down when the latter comes on, which I’ve never experienced despite it being played at every wedding I’ve ever been to.
#6 On the essential lingo you need to survive
“If you want to be an Australian, here is the lingo you need to know,” begins Jordana.
As you can imagine, she then goes on to name a few classics, like my aforementioned ‘thongs’, as well as ‘drongo’, ‘dukkah’, ‘doona’ and Vegemite. Which obviously isn’t lingo, but important to know nonetheless. Do you see what I mean though? These aren’t even the weird and whacky ones!
#7 On wearing long socks
“I see all these beautiful, muscular Greek god-like men running with no shirt, tiny shorts, but socks pulled all the way up,” she says.
This is definitely a thing, that I personally blame on footy and soccer that usually require high socks as part of the uniform. Now dudes think they have to wear them no matter what exercise they’re doing.
(Lead Image: Unsplash /Annie Spratt)
Kassia is the Editor of AWOL, and a straight-up travel addict. She was born without a sense of direction, yet an intense desire to explore the world. As such, she's lost 90% of the time but she's learned to roll with it. You can catch her latest adventures on Instagram @probably_kassia.