July 26, 2014

Sloppy Joes, Lollies, and Whippersnippers


I live in a house with 2 Aussies ladies and one Swiss {:also a girl for the record:}. This is a lot of culture meshed together in one house for this small town West Virginia girl, but I am loving it. How often do you get to do this? With this, there definitely comes a cultural divide and a willingness to learn to speak each others languages. Yes, Aussies speak English, but I would definitely say they have their own version.

For instance, take one of my favorite stories since I have been here. This "language barrier" happened between me and my Aussie housemate, Bree. The first few days I was here, it was just Bree and me in the house. Through our conversations I frequently had to stop her and ask her what she was talking about because I was a little lost. With talk of lollies and jumpers and rubbers I realized she was using words in a different context than I was use to. Anyway, one morning I was sitting on my bed playing on the computer in my hoodie and Bree knocks, comes into my room, and jumps on my bed exclaiming "I love your sloppy joe!" I awkwardly laughed, again not having a clue what she was talking about. I just figure this was possibly another weird Aussie saying, but I wasn't sure if she was calling me a slob for wearing a hoodie or what exactly was going on in this moment. My face must have said all of these things because she pointed to my hoodie and said "isn't that what you call those in the states?" She told me in an effort to keep up with the American culture she looked up American slang and this poor website misinformed her as to what we call hoodies.  After explaining to her that a sloppy joe was actually a type of sandwich we both sat on my bed doubled over in laughter.

So to the Australian traveler let me help you a bit with the language barrier:

Lollies: Nope, not a lollipop, but any candy that's not chocolate: skittles, smarties (except smarties aren't the same thing here-they're  chocolate), etc.
Whippersnipper: weed whacker/edger
Boot: The trunk of your car.
Jumper: Sweater
Biscuit: Cracker or a cookie
Rubbers: Eraser (That could be an interesting one used in school hey?)
Muffin: Biscuit
Trolly: Shopping Cart
Duna: Bedspread
Breakie: Breakfast

And yes, they do use the word "mate" quite frequently. Well, I suppose one could say my horizons are just being expanded right?

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3 comments:

  1. We call them whippersnippers in Canada too! I had no idea it wasn't a widely used term!

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  2. One barrier removed! I hope you are adjusting and settling in.
    Hugs

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  3. I would definitely have a hard time with the language barrier and different words they use lol! Hey, just add it to your resume -fluent in Aussie lingo ;)

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