It's a funny life as an expat sometimes, especially for the children who never quite know where to call "home". My family and I had a funny discussion the other day about the kids' identity, and whether they are really Australian, as their passports declare. They have never really lived in Australia and are not familiar with many of the weird and wacky Australian-isms that you hear day to day over there. I have lived outside Australia for most of my adult life, and so they don't pick up much Strine from me, and Martin is from U.K!


Martin mentioned how Miley Syrus is a little confused about some of the things her Aussie boyfriend, Liam Hemsworth, comes out with. In the Sydney Morning Herald she is quoted as saying "The thing Liam says that always makes me laugh is 'Bob's your uncle,''' Cyrus said. ''I'm like 'What are you saying? Who's Bob? What are you talking about?' He always says it and I say, 'I don't know what you are talking about but it is hilarious.'''

"Bob's your uncle" is not actually an authentically Australian phrase, such as fair dinkum, mad as a cut snake, gone walkabout, chuck a Uey (one I do say when driving...any guesses to the meaning?), not the full quid. "Bob's your uncle" most probably originated in Britain, and according to Wiki, probably 'derives from the slang phrase "All is bob", meaning that everything is safe, pleasant or satisfactory. This dates back to the eighteenth century or so...'

But as we were laughing about this strange phrase today, Ben misheard it and thought we were saying "Bob's your ankle". He had never heard the expression and was just felt just like Miley Syrus, I'm sure. But I guess "Bob's your ankle" makes just as much sense as "Bob's your uncle" :)

If we ever get back to Australia, my kids will feel like real dills when the rellies chuck a wobbly cos they're calling lollies "candy" and bikkies "cookies"and any tick of the clock they might want to send the ankle biters out to woop woop to teach them some true blue Ozzy jargon!

2 comments

Melinda said... @ March 23, 2010 at 12:11 AM

Oh Milly, I love chucking a Uey, and confusing Cabbies by telling them my pram is in the Boot. Even a chip can cause a fuss here. Nice Aussie post. :)

Anonymous said... @ March 23, 2010 at 7:59 AM

Nice post. On a recent trip back to Australia, I noticed how more singaporean my daughter sounded than australian, how she kept referring to her thongs as "slippers" and when bushwalking one day she kept referring to being in the jungle. On the train she was fascinated by graffiti, wanting to know who gave permission for people to draw on the walls. Her passport says she's Australian, but I recognise the influence is minimal. Does it want me to rush back home - not just yet.

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