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Sunday, January 25, 2015

Oh! -_o, _o, _o....All those 'o' s ! (Australia Day) .

Now some readers may have arrived looking for the Grow Your Own Blog Party post, well it's here, and a big welcome to you! 

Today is January 26 which is celebrated as Australia Day. It marks the date  in 1788, when the first boatloads of Europeans arrived to set up a British Colony, which had been named New South Wales by Captain James Cook in 1770. There of course had been people already living in this land; the Aboriginal people...what must they have thought? Their descendants now consider Australia Day as Invasion Day. 

But I'm going to write a different sort of post to celebrate Australia Day...Australia was a British colony but we pretty soon developed our own slang, sayings, idioms, colloquialisms etc. Some of these have their origins in UK too of course. Having had training in TESOL/ESL, (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages and English as a Second Language) I try not to use too many colloquialisms in blog posts as it can made it difficult for readers whose first language is not English...and of course the online translation programs can't handle these sayings. 
But a few times I must have used the term, 'arvo' and have received emails asking what an arvo is. 
I realised that Aussies love to shorten words and put an o on the end of the shortened 'afternoon' is shortened to 'arvo' :-/. DH and I sat down one day and we thought of all the other shortened words with an o added on the's our list. 

Ambo...ambulance officer
Smoko...a break from work for a cup of tea...and a smoke
Garbo...the rubbish collector
Journo...a journalist
Aggro...describing someone's aggressive behaviour
Johno...the surname Johnson
Jacko...the surname Jackson
Robbo...the surname Robinson or Robertson, as in 'mind your own business'
Bottle-o...nowadays, the liquor or bottle shop...old days, the men who came around the streets collecting empty bottles from residents and paying a few pence to people
Servo...Service Station where petrol/gas is sold
Thingo...thing, when you can't remember the name of something. Sometimes used when a person's name has been forgotten.
Metho...methylated spirits
Nasho...A person called up for National Service in the conscription though nowadays.
Rego...registration as in 'My car rego is due'...

There are many other slang words ending with o...such as 'drongo'and 'yobbo'...Can you guess what they mean? It's tricky because they aren't abbreviations with an o put on the end :-)

I will finish off with one of DH's favourite greetings that he likes to use...
'Gidday, Ocker, Digger, Cobber, Mate! How ya going?' ( basic translation, 'hello my friend, how are you?' The words Ocker, Digger, Cobber are all Australianisms meaning mate/friend) land DH uses them all at once! Lol


Peg - Happy In Quilting said...

Hope you has a good day ... Great post x

Susan said...

Aren't aussies guilty of pet hate is veggies...followed By snags

Bette said...

Very interesting post. Would love to visit Australia some day.

Susan said...

Happy Australia Day to you too Maria.
I loved your rundown on Aussie slang - there are lots of the 'o' words when you make a list.
I can add a couple... Avo = avocado,
Gyno = gynaecologist

Cheerio ;D)

Lin said...

Great post Maria. xx

angela said...

Yup. Put an "o" on the end of anything and it's aussie slang. Lol hope you had a great day xx

Mizumatte said...

thanks for the wordlist, now I can understand a little bit more about what my cousins write on facebook. Take care Jaana

Cynthia said...

Aussies have such fun slang. I had been wondering what arvo meant as I saw it in a blog and couldn't work out the meaning from the context. Thanks for enlightening me!