I’ve definitely picked up some Aussie-isms since moving here over 2 years ago. I think them in my head quite often, but I don’t usually speak them out loud. Really I like to think I’m just picking up Andrew-isms but when I was home in June last year my friends quickly pointed out that ‘yeaaauuuhhh’ (probably best if you hear it, not read it) is definitely not just something Andrew says. They all laughed at me and said it was totally Aussie. But really, that didn’t count as a slip of the Aussie tongue. Honestly, that was just picking up how Andrew talks- it doesn’t necessarily represent all Australians… at least I don’t think it does.
I just don’t think I verbalize many of the Aussie-isms I pick up. I feel that’s because I find it quite annoying when Americans move here and within 2 weeks they’ve acquired an accent, have started spelling differently and start referring to their moms as their mums. I still refuse to write or say “mum” unless I am specifically writing it about an Australian person’s mum. Like today for instance, I was writing an email to Andrew’s brother and I wrote “my mom and your mum blah blah blah…” Yes, I really did spell it differently when I was referring to my mother versus his mother. I clearly filter what I say and write depending on the person I’m talking to. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with picking up the lingo and slang after a few years, but I guess I tried so hard not to be one of those lameos that thinks they have become an Aussie the minute they walk through those airport doors that now it’s actually weird if I say something that sounds Australian.
So my first official slip of the tongue occurred this week when I was speaking to American clients back home. I said “How are you going?” No, I didn’t say “how are you doing?” This was definitely ” how are you going.” I guess it’s good that at least I said how ARE YOU going instead of the traditional “how ya’ goin’?” I also suppose it’s good that it took me over two years to let that one slip to an American. I was shocked when I said it and immediately thought “they must be so confused… they won’t know how to respond.” I don’t even remember if they did respond because I was too busy pondering my verbal slip.
But I promise… even though I let that one spill out, I will NOT be saying brekkie, pressies, bikkie, cozzie, dunny or any of those other EEEE words any time soon. Those ones still drive me nuts. Maybe in another two years…