A Pair-of-Phrases

In Australia they speak English. Yes, but it’s Aussie-English. It’s a wee bit different from our Canadjun-English. So, to keep things straight in my own mind (must write things down) and to share the subtle, and, sometimes, not so subtle, differences in our expressions, I’ve started this evolving list of Canadian meets Aussie vernacular:

  • Rush hour vs. peak hour (either way it bites if you’re caught in it)
  • Sofa/couch vs. lounge
  • How are you doing? vs. How you going?
  • Peppers vs. capsicum (be they red, yellow, green or orange varieties)
  • A 2-4 of cans vs. a slab of tinnies
  • Duvet/comforter vs. a doona
  • Liquor store vs. bottle shop
  • Lots vs. heaps
  • Guy vs. bloke
  • Sweater vs. jumper
  • Land transfer tax vs. stamp duty
  • Yield vs. give way
  • Hiking vs. bush walking
  • References vs. referees (this one just makes me chuckle)
  • My treat vs. my shout (as in I’m buying dinner)
  • Booking vs. reservation (for the the same dinner above)
  • Stores vs. shops
  • Bathing suit vs. cozzie
  • Gas station vs. servo
  • Headboard vs. bed head
  • Hood vs. bonnet (and yes, we’re talking cars here!)
  • Shopping cart vs. trolley
  • Windshield vs. windscreen
  • Full vs. chocka
  • Pound sign vs. hash (on a telephone key pad)
  • Soda/pop vs. fizzy drink
  • Red onion vs. spanish onion (which gets really confusing when there’s a spanish onion called a brown onion tossed into the mix!)
  • Mickey D’s vs. Maccas (referring to the golden arches of course)
  • Rice Crispies vs. Rice Bubbles
  • Trunk vs. boot (of the automotive variety)
  • Bangs vs. fringe
  • I think vs. I reckon
  • Raisins vs. sultanas
  • Dinner vs. tea
  • Merry vs. happy (as in Christmas)
  • Tank top vs. singlet
  • Store hours or hours of operation vs. trading hours (which are pretty limited compared to North America)
  • Ginger ale vs. ginger beer (my kingdom for a Canada Dry!) (PS – I found Schweppes – a close 2nd)
  • Sick or ill vs. crook (and you certainly don’t want to  be “crook as Rookwood”)
  • Registered retirement savings plan vs. super annuation
  • Take-out vs. take away
  • Garbage vs. rubbish
  • Can vs. bin (for holding above)
  • Sidewalk vs. footpath
  • Getting a ticket vs. getting booked
  • Trailer vs. caravan
  • Hammered vs. magotted (as in really stinkin’ drunk)
  • Inventory vs. stock take
  • Rent vs. hire (as in a car, a bike, or a video even!)
  • Drywall vs. gyprock (funnily enough I learned this one at the salon!)
  • Pot lights vs. recessed halogens or down lights
  • The slots vs. the pokies
  • The works vs. the lot….as in, “I’ll have a burger with the works!”
  • Passing lane vs. overtaking lane
  • Great vs. ripper
  • Flat out busy vs. flat chat
  • Wiped vs. knackered
  • Bang on vs. spot on
  • Lock, stock and barrel vs. balls and all (thanks to Tim and Leah for a few of these!)
  • Gum vs. chewy
  • Base boards vs. skirting boards
  • Work vs. yakka (as in that was “hard yakka”)
  • Cotton candy/candy floss vs. fairy floss
  • Stripes and Solids vs. Overs and Unders (or biggies or littlies)…as in pool…
  • Corn dogs vs. pluto pups
  • Playing hookey vs. jigging
  • Variety store vs. mixed business
  • Drinking fountain vs. bubblers
  • Chug vs. skull (the opposite to sip!)
  • Take a mental health day vs. chuckin’ a sickie
  • Candies vs. lollies
  • Speedo vs. budgie smuggler (this one’s for you Frank (AKA one-fun-young-guy)

5 thoughts on “A Pair-of-Phrases

  1. Good stuff in there. Brings back fond memories of my visit doon unda. Add this one..’takin the piss’ for making fun of someone. “You taking the piss outa me mate?’

  2. Everything in Australian english is abbreviated as in Sunny`s -sun glassess,chrissy barby-Christmas Barbeque,Brissy Brisbane etc.Apparently the lazy buggers are that way with the language too.

  3. Hammered vs. magotted vs. shit faced 😛

    “…went down the local last night with the boys and got shit faced!”

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