Advertising
Advertising

28 Things Only Americans Living in Australia Would Understand

28 Things Only Americans Living in Australia Would Understand

We may think Australian and American cultures are similar, but really, they aren’t. The more you hang out in ‘Straya the more you understand the subtle nuances and differences between how they live, love and eat. I’ve been living in Melbourne, Australia for three years and these are what I believe only Americans living in Australia would understand, mate.

1. You’ve eaten kangaroo and thought it tasted okay

Most Americans cringe at the idea of eating a furry fellow like kangaroo. But, living here long enough you’ll have tried it and thought it was okay, maybe even tasty. And if you’re really adventurous you would have tried wallaby and wombat, too.

kangaroo

    2. You struggle with saying tomato

    The moment you say tomato with an American accent an Australian will generally call you out. I worked in hospitality when I first arrived and customers would howl when I said tomato like an American. I quickly learned to say tomato like an Aussie, just to avoid a ten-minute conversation about where I was from.

    tomato

      3. You realise the letter ‘R’ is nonexistent

      Car sounds like ca, bar sounds like ba, water sounds like wata. If you want to sound more like an Australian just remove the ‘r’ from every word.

      4. You don’t spell realise with a ‘z’

      The letter ‘z’ is replaced with ‘s’ in words like realise.

      Advertising

      5. You know you aren’t expected to overwork

      With a country motto of ‘No worries,’ you realise that Australians are a lot more laid back when it comes to work than Americans. They get four weeks vacation, instead of two, and that is awesome.

      6. You understand ‘Tall Poppy Syndrome’ is a real thing

      There isn’t such a massive divide between the rich and poor in Australia as there is in the US. Australians happily live their lives comfortably, without climbing any ladders or stepping on someone to get ahead. Australians don’t care to be better than the person next to them. I found it interesting when I went to see the Lion King in the theatre and very few people stood up for a standing ovation when the cast came out. For me, that was an example of ‘Tall Poppy’.

      7. You like Vegemite, when applied to toast properly

      You often find Americans eating vegemite by the spoonful in silly YouTube videos. When a thin layer of Vegemite is applied to a buttery piece of toast, it’s actually delicious and loaded with Vitamin B.

      vegemite

        8. You say ‘howyagoin?’

        I find myself asking ‘howyagoin’ when chatting with friends. Americans say ‘How are you?’ and articulate their words, while Australians are happy to let it all out in one breath. The first time I asked my mom over the phone, ‘howyagoin?’, she had no idea what I said.

        9. You don’t own a dryer

        Australians don’t often own dryers, and I have to say I’ve learned to be okay with it. My electric bill is much lower.

        10. You always have cash when you eat out, because you know restaurants do not split bills or are cash-only.

        Almost everywhere you go in the US takes card but Australia has quite a few places that only take cash. Also, when you go out to eat with friends they are not into splitting bills, so you better bring cash or you owe your friend, or they owe you.

        11. You make sure you like what you’ve ordered, substitutions are frowned upon

        There is so much choice in the US, from salad dressings, vegetables or potato, coleslaw or salad. Australian menus are straight forward and often chefs are not into the idea of you changing anything on their menu. Take it as it is, or leave.

        Advertising

        12. You know McDonald’s isn’t that cheap and it’s called Macca’s

        $1 cheeseburgers are not a thing in Australia. A meal costs about $10 depending on where you are.

        macca's

          13. Not tipping feels a bit wrong, until you find out hospitality workers are making around $17 an hour

          It took me a while to adjust to the fact that Australians don’t tip, but in the service industry, employees are making a pretty good hourly rate.

          14. You rarely find WiFi in a cafe in Australia

          You go to a cafe to eat or chat. It’s not often you find a cafe that has WiFi, while in the US you can’t find one that doesn’t.

          15. You know Starbucks is not a thing and you drink flat whites

          Fresh coffee made by a barista is what Australia is all about. Forget about two pumps of caramel sauce or a coffee the size of a gallon jug. Australians, especially Melbournians, take a lot of pride in their coffee expertise.

          16. You use your air-con sparingly, and call it air-con

          Most places in the US have the air-conditioning on full blast. In Australia, they seem to be more conscious of it. Also, most older houses don’t even have air-con.

          17. You know it’s life or death when looking left crossing the road

          You will only make the mistake once or twice after almost getting hit by a car because you looked the wrong way. You know your best bet is to look both ways, multiple times, just to be sure before crossing.

          Advertising

          18. You now call your fanny pack a bumbag

          Fanny does not mean butt in Australia, it means something else. You quickly learn to call it a bumbag after you get a few awkward stares.

          19. You know that c*nt is strangely a term of endearment

          The ‘C’ word is one of the most foul words you can use in America. However, in Australia it’s a term of endearment. If someone calls you a funny c*nt or a silly c*nt, they actually think you’re great.

          20. You know you are weird if you eat out or go to a bar alone

          Heading out to a bar alone to meet new people isn’t weird in the US, but for some reason you won’t ever see an Australian sitting at the bar alone. Why that is, I’m not entirely sure.

          21. You figured out that dating multiple people at once isn’t cool

          Americans date multiple people at once and are fine with it. Australians, not so much. You date one person at a time and don’t even think about hooking up with someone else, until that other fling is over.

          22. You know thongs are worn on your feet

          Cisco wasn’t singing about sandals in the ‘Thong Song’, but in Australia, thongs are actually worn on your feet and a G-string is the underwear that goes up your butt crack.

          23. You realise you can abbreviate most words

          University is Uni (aka college), ambo is ambulance, vego is vegetarian. The list goes on. Australians just ‘can’t be bothered’ with saying full words. Who has time for that anyways?

          24. Some words you say are not what you think you’ve said

          Coriander is cilantro, aubergine is eggplant. Americans say aluminum, while Australians pronounce the whole thing: aluminium. There is a whole lot of words that are completely different and mean the same thing.

          Advertising

          25. You now use a ‘u’ when spelling certain words and have to correct your American spell check

          Flavour, savour, favour, behaviour. It’s all got a ‘u’. When I’m writing something in Microsoft Word it always underlines the words as misspelled. I need to change my computer to speak Australian, mate.

          26. Your friends are now your mates

          Which once meant they were your significant other, but your significant other is now your partner, which usually means a significant other in a homosexual relationship. No wonder dating is so challenging.

          27. You know you can sit at a table with just a coffee, and you don’t feel bad about it

          Since servers make good hourly wages, there is no rush to turn over the table. It’s a great feeling to know you can have a leisurely coffee catch up with a friend without worrying about the server eyeballing you to order food or leave.

          28. You respect Australian football because they don’t wear pads, and you know to call it footy

          Australian footy players are rough as guts. They don’t wear pads like NFL players do. Footy is huge in Australia, same way the NFL is big in the US.

          Here are 15 American habits you need to lose when you move to Australia, as well as 14 must-have phrases we should all be using.

          Featured photo credit: Vincent Brown via flickr.com

          More by this author

          Overwhelmed System Overload: How to Deal With Feeling Overwhelmed This Is What Will Happen When You Become Emotionally Intelligent What Love Is Really Like 28 Things Only Americans Living in Australia Would Understand keeping cool in the corporate world How to Keep Your Cool in the Corporate World

          Trending in Lifestyle

          1 7 Best Probiotic Supplements (Recommendation & Reviews) 2 11 Partner Yoga Poses for Couples to Build Intimacy 3 Signs of a Nervous Breakdown (And How to Survive It) 4 7 Best Weight Loss Supplements That Are Healthy and Effective 5 8 Beginner Yoga Tips for Just About Anyone

          Read Next

          Advertising
          Advertising
          Advertising

          Last Updated on March 13, 2019

          How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

          How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

          Have you gotten into a rut before? Or are you in a rut right now?

          You know you’re in a rut when you run out of ideas and inspiration. I personally see a rut as a productivity vacuum. It might very well be a reason why you aren’t getting results. Even as you spend more time on your work, you can’t seem to get anything constructive done. While I’m normally productive, I get into occasional ruts (especially when I’ve been working back-to-back without rest). During those times, I can spend an entire day in front of the computer and get nothing done. It can be quite frustrating.

          Over time, I have tried and found several methods that are helpful to pull me out of a rut. If you experience ruts too, whether as a working professional, a writer, a blogger, a student or other work, you will find these useful. Here are 12 of my personal tips to get out of ruts:

          1. Work on the small tasks.

          When you are in a rut, tackle it by starting small. Clear away your smaller tasks which have been piling up. Reply to your emails, organize your documents, declutter your work space, and reply to private messages.

          Whenever I finish doing that, I generate a positive momentum which I bring forward to my work.

          2. Take a break from your work desk.

          Get yourself away from your desk and go take a walk. Go to the washroom, walk around the office, go out and get a snack.

          Your mind is too bogged down and needs some airing. Sometimes I get new ideas right after I walk away from my computer.

          Advertising

          3. Upgrade yourself

          Take the down time to upgrade yourself. Go to a seminar. Read up on new materials (#7). Pick up a new language. Or any of the 42 ways here to improve yourself.

          The modern computer uses different typefaces because Steve Jobs dropped in on a calligraphy class back in college. How’s that for inspiration?

          4. Talk to a friend.

          Talk to someone and get your mind off work for a while.

          Talk about anything, from casual chatting to a deep conversation about something you really care about. You will be surprised at how the short encounter can be rejuvenating in its own way.

          5. Forget about trying to be perfect.

          If you are in a rut, the last thing you want to do is step on your own toes with perfectionist tendencies.

          Just start small. Do what you can, at your own pace. Let yourself make mistakes.

          Soon, a little trickle of inspiration will come. And then it’ll build up with more trickles. Before you know it, you have a whole stream of ideas.

          Advertising

          6. Paint a vision to work towards.

          If you are continuously getting in a rut with your work, maybe there’s no vision inspiring you to move forward.

          Think about why you are doing this, and what you are doing it for. What is the end vision in mind?

          Make it as vivid as possible. Make sure it’s a vision that inspires you and use that to trigger you to action.

          7. Read a book (or blog).

          The things we read are like food to our brain. If you are out of ideas, it’s time to feed your brain with great materials.

          Here’s a list of 40 books you can start off with. Stock your browser with only the feeds of high quality blogs, such as Lifehack.org, DumbLittleMan, Seth Godin’s Blog, Tim Ferris’ Blog, Zen Habits or The Personal Excellence Blog.

          Check out the best selling books; those are generally packed with great wisdom.

          8. Have a quick nap.

          If you are at home, take a quick nap for about 20-30 minutes. This clears up your mind and gives you a quick boost. Nothing quite like starting off on a fresh start after catching up on sleep.

          Advertising

          9. Remember why you are doing this.

          Sometimes we lose sight of why we do what we do, and after a while we become jaded. A quick refresher on why you even started on this project will help.

          What were you thinking when you thought of doing this? Retrace your thoughts back to that moment. Recall why you are doing this. Then reconnect with your muse.

          10. Find some competition.

          Nothing quite like healthy competition to spur us forward. If you are out of ideas, then check up on what people are doing in your space.

          Colleagues at work, competitors in the industry, competitors’ products and websites, networking conventions.. you get the drill.

          11. Go exercise.

          Since you are not making headway at work, might as well spend the time shaping yourself up.

          Sometimes we work so much that we neglect our health and fitness. Go jog, swim, cycle, whichever exercise you prefer.

          As you improve your physical health, your mental health will improve, too. The different facets of ourselves are all interlinked.

          Advertising

          Here’re 15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It).

          12. Take a good break.

          Ruts are usually signs that you have been working too long and too hard. It’s time to get a break.

          Beyond the quick tips above, arrange for a 1-day or 2-days of break from your work. Don’t check your (work) emails or do anything work-related. Relax and do your favorite activities. You will return to your work recharged and ready to start.

          Contrary to popular belief, the world will not end from taking a break from your work. In fact, you will be much more ready to make an impact after proper rest. My best ideas and inspiration always hit me whenever I’m away from my work.

          Take a look at this to learn the importance of rest: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

          More Resources About Getting out of a Rut

          Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com

          Read Next