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Oceania How do you all talk?

Discussion in 'Oceania Discussion Boards' started by theScreenwriter, Sep 29, 2001.

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  1. theScreenwriter Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2001
    G'day mates!

    I hope you don't mind my intrusion down under. I'm from the states, and am writing a screenplay that involves Australian characters. In hopes of being as accurate as possible, I was wondering if Australians talk differently than Americans.

    In the movies, you always hear Australians using "mate" and "bloke" and such. What are some actual phrases that you use? I'd love to get just an idea of how the dialogue for this character should be.

    If you can shed any other light on what an Australian character should do, I'd love to hear that too. Thanks!
  2. mutley Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 13, 1998
    star 4
    It would be easier if you provide a few examples of what you need:
    For instance:
    (US) I'm watching the Football on television today with a few buddies?
    (Aussie) I'm sitting in front of the tele with a few mates watch'in the footy with a couple of slabs and a Bar B later on?.

    If you need words, write them down here and I'm sure a few of us Aussie's would be happy to put them into our language for you. :)

    for example:
    male=bloke
    female=sheila(not used very often these days)
    buddy=mate(applies to both male and female)
    cooler=esky
    idiot=drop kick, drongo,few cans short of a six-pack and others.
    A body of water=Billabong
    Drunk=pi**ed or sh**faced.(pls excuse bad language)

    Anything requires an R rated(18 and above) explanation just send someone a PM.

    Hope the above helps..

    BTW-we don't talk like this all the time, in fact Aussie lingo(words)are rapidly leaving our cultural heritage(which is a shame) we speak most of the time like everyone else.
  3. soneil Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 30, 2000
    star 4
    To make it authentic, make sure you go light on the slang. Aussies generally cringe when they see a movie with an over the top portrayal of an Australian character, even when the actor is Australian.

    To add to Mutley's advice - we say a lot of other words differently too. Here's a few examples.

    Turn on the faucet - Turn on the tap
    Car hood - Car bonnet
    Car trunk - Car boot
    Bread and jelly - Bread and jam
    Jello - Jelly
    Cookies - Biscuits/bikkies
    Candy - lollies
    Summer and Fall - Summer and Autumn
    Soda pop - cool drink
    Vomit/regurgitate - puke, chuck up

    I know there's heaps more but that's all I can think of at the moment. I'm sure other folks can add some more.

    A few other expressions

    No problem = She'll be right
    Good for you = good on ya! (sometimes sounds like all one word when we say it)

    Watch Heath Ledger in something like 10 things I hate about you or Russell Crowe in any movie where he's not playing an American (like Prrof of Life or one of his earlier Australian films). They should give you a bit of an idea of how Aussies speak in normal conversation.
    If you want a more slang style australian accent, I'd recommend an Australian movie like The Castle. Funny movie that one too!
  4. TheOzhaggis Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 1, 2000
    star 5

    jelly (US) = jam (Au)

    Personally, I don't know ANYONE who says Mate, Bloke, Sheila, etc.


    Did you know that Newcastle is *officially* the most average town in Australia? That is, we have just about every kind of person that you'll find in Australia - and I've NEVER heard anyone use that kind of slang - except when they're being sarcastic or taking the piss.

    The only other time I hear stuff like that is on Australian soapies.

    "Flash as a rat with a gold tooth..."
    "Don't come the raw prawn with me!"
    "Listen here, girly girl..."

    etc

    (And I bet everyone knows exactly where I got them from - because it's the only place you'll hear them..)

    So my advice (as an Aussie and a writer): don't think of them as Aussies: think of them as people who come from Australia - which means they don't think about any of the things that Americans et al think are neat about Australia (like Koalas and kangaroos) except when they see one (usually dead on the side of the road), they're just (usually) normal, everyday folk.

    Ock-hay.

    That's today's lecture.

    See you tomorrow.
  5. Teknobabel Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 4, 2000
    star 5
    And never mention Steve Irwin around any decent aussie
    And another film to see is definitely The Dish, nice example of when an american gets stuck with four aussie workmates.

  6. Sith Magician Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 14, 1999
    star 5
  7. TheOzhaggis Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 1, 2000
    star 5


    The Dish, absolutely.

    (Not to forget the US Ambassador - and Hawaii Five-0!)

    There's a lot of great aussie movies - but whether you can get them in the US is another thing ...

    Um er, Man From Snowy River is a classic, but not really typical of Aust (and don't bother with the sequel).

    See if you can get Alvin Purple, Puberty Blues ...

    [face_love]

  8. Ki-Bara-Mundi Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 27, 2000
    star 6
    Ask someone for an episode of an Aussie soap called "Home and Away", then look out for a guy called Alf. THAT'S how we talk. [face_mischief]
  9. Zyphyr Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Sep 13, 2001
    star 3
    Only people in rural areas tend to use the terms "mate" and "g'day" - everyone else talks in normal English. Country people also say "I reckon" instead of "I think" (sometimes at least). My advice would be to use normal English and maybe occasionally throw in an Australianism. We really don't use them that often unless you live "beyond the black stump" (way, way out in the bush, outback, scrub.)

    Other phrases you probably haven't heard before, but are used frequently here are:

    "Crack the ****s"
    = got into a huff, got p*ssed off, upset (even people in the UK are tickled when they hear an Aussie use this phrase for the first time.)

    "Send her down, Huey"
    = plea to Huey, the god of Rain and crap weather. Usually a sarcastic comment when it is bucketing down.

    "As useless as t*ts on a bull"
    = pretty damn useless.

    "I'm p*ssed, She/He's p*ssed, They're p*ssed"
    = drunk. Doesn't mean angry or upset here. If you're angry or upset here you're "p*ssed OFF"

    Hope this helps. Another good idea would be to enter "Australian slang" or "Strine" (the term for Aussie slang, taken from how we tend to pronounce it 'Austrine') into a search engine. Good luck, mate! :)
  10. Jayd Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Aug 30, 2001
    star 3
    Zyphyr where did you get all of them from??? Is that some weird kind of way the Victorians talk?

    Oh, West Aussies say "over East" when we're talking about the rest of Australia (minus NT and SA).

    You must include references to vegemite. :D

    And do watch The Dish, unless they've changed the language so you Americans will understand it, like they did in the Castle.

    We talk normally. We do NOT have an accent like Paul Hogan (Crocodile Dundee). We do not say things like "she'll be right, mate" unless we're Alf from Home and Away, or a total bogan and male. And if you ever call an Aussie chick a sheila she'll probably kick your ass.

    There you go, hope that helps. :)
  11. theScreenwriter Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2001
    Thanks mates!

    That was bloody helpful! Before, I was just a few cans short of a six pack when it comes to the way you blokes and sheilas (oh...wait--no "sheila) spoke. But now I think I've got it all. Good on all ya! I won't stuff it up.

    So, as Huey is sendin' it down, I'll return to my writing. By the way, I actually did catch the drift--you all talk pretty bloody normal--so don't worry, I'll keep the stereotyping to a minimum.

    Oh, and I did see THE DISH--wonderful film! I'll check it again for the dialogue. Thanks so much!
  12. JediEnna Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 25, 2000
    star 4
    I wouldn't wave that "few cans short" one around too much, it means a bit slow mentally rather than ignorant about a particular subject. :)

    and here is a thread we had going about aussie slang in the UBB days....couldn't find the original though.
  13. Sith Magician Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 14, 1999
    star 5
    Actually, something I should have mentioned, Look at Point Break, near the end where Keanu's character is aproaching the beach in Australia where Swayze is out during the 50 year storm, there's a bit where an aussie actor (Peter Phelps) comes up and speaks to Keanu, also the police a few minutes later.
    Also take note of the Aussies in MI2,

    I beg you, please, please, please disregard those examples of Australian speech.
    They made my skin crawl...
  14. TheOzhaggis Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 1, 2000
    star 5


    Fair dinkum, Sith, you hit that one on the noggin.

    True blue, when I laid me flies on em I ran like a rat up a drain pipe.

    Streeewth.

  15. Sith Magician Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 14, 1999
    star 5
  16. soneil Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 30, 2000
    star 4
    Funny seeing that thread on the old forums and seeing how many names from back then are still around.

    Anyway...
    I'm not sure if I agree with all the comments about how we really don't say mate and speak with accents etc. In my earlier post I mentioned that we don't do it as much as in movies like the ones Sith Magician mentioned but I think some of you guys are underestimating just how much we really do use slang. I certainly use mate, just not a lot. And as for the accents, they don't seem much to us but spend a lot of time hanging around non-australians (epecially from the US), then listen to aussies talk and you'll realise just how strong our accents really are.
    The accents and slang do increase the further you get from city areas but we still have our fair share of it. Actually, I find that I even notice subtle differences when I travel interstate.
  17. Chansplace Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 2, 2001
    star 4
  18. Uruk-hai Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Oct 26, 2000
    star 5
    That's right, Bro! Cook me sum iggs eh gil!
  19. Jayd Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Aug 30, 2001
    star 3
    Go the NZers! [face_laugh] You're so funny...

    As to the thing soneil said, yeah I agree with you, BUT it's most of the time only guys who talk like that (or bogan or country chicks). Usually girls talk normally. That's been my experience, anyway.

    We should start a new slang thread. I love Aussie slang.
  20. JediMasterKieca Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 30, 2000
    star 4
    Some of us use American slang sometimes...I know Scream is famous for calling people dude...

    And the latest word for something good is sweet, is that Australian or Universal? *scratches head*
  21. Teknobabel Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 4, 2000
    star 5
    And please do not use the aussie from Sahara as an example of aussie slang, that was a long time ago and we've all gotten a bit older since then

    And yes gundagai is a city / town in australia
  22. Zyphyr Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Sep 13, 2001
    star 3
    One guy in my class uses the term 'sweet' constantly in homage to South Park. We keep threatening to beat him to a pulp, but he just continues merrily along oblivious to how close he is dancing to the reaper. :)

    And in defence of my earlier posting of 'Strine' phrases...

    I live in Wodonga.

    You can draw your own conclusions from that fact :D
  23. JediEnna Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 25, 2000
    star 4
    my great grandmother lived in Gundagai. And it's a town. A really really small one. They don't even have a bank any more.

    I disagree that girls "talk normally". Define normal please. It's still with an Australian accent.

    "sweet" is definitely Australian. I was in Italy in July, surrounded in the major cities by holidaying americans. When my friend was waiting in the line to enter the colosseum she heard english behind her. She turned around to ask them if they could mind her place and the guy said "yeah, sweet". Definietly an Aussie. :D

  24. soneil Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 30, 2000
    star 4
    A few other aussie words That are used in moderation (though many are also used by kiwis). Most people wouldn't use them much if at all but some do.

    Bloody - a common curse word. As in bloody bad weather
    Crikey - Expression of surprise
    For crying out loud - expression of frustration.
  25. Jayd Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Aug 30, 2001
    star 3
    Enna, by saying that girls talk normally, I mean that most of the time our accents aren't as thick as the guys, and we might use the slang but not really as much. Like, guys go around all the time saying sweet and bloody hell and all the others, but chicks only occasionally do it.

    Have you seen differently?
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