Recently I’ve been getting some grief from my fellow Yanks about being too Aussie. Look, I love this country almost as much as my own, but I’ve still got my American pride deeply intact, I can assure you.
So feeling a bit like the ‘(wo)man in the middle’, I’ve come up with few tips for my Yankee and Aussie friends when meeting one another for the first time.
To the Aussies:
1. Under no circumstances should you ever just assume we are from Canada. To us, it’s the same as just assuming you are from New Zealand. Same difference right? Not at all. And as far as we know, the only good things to come out of Canada are hockey and Mike Myers. And we only care about one of those things. (Schwing!)
2. In addition to 1, when we say we are from America, never say: “Oh, I was in Canada last year.” Alrighty, thanks for that bit of information. And your point is…?
3. And just in case you aren’t up on American history, a “Yankee” by definition is: “A native or inhabitant of a northern U.S. state, especially one of the northern states that sided with the union in the American Civil War.” We’re not all technically Yanks, just like you’re not all “banana benders” (Queenslanders). –[sidebar:] I am technically a yank but that’s not what we’re discussing here.
4. Ask what state we are from before telling a redneck joke. People from the mid-west and the south probably know a lot of rednecks, are related to rednecks, or are a redneck. By the way, What do you get when you have 32 rednecks in one room? A full set of teeth.
For the Yanks:
1. Yes, we love the Australian accent, but asking them to “say something” is not only vague, but really quite annoying.
2. Do not, I repeat, do not ask them to say: “G’day Mate”, “Crikey”, or “That’s not a knife, this is a knife.” You will honestly be the billionth person who thinks it’s clever to ask that.
3. Any questions about boomerangs, kangaroos, and Crocodile Dundee should also be avoided at all costs. Australia really has a lot more to offer than that – get a book.
4. And last but not least (and this is an important one), unless you have a close Australian friend you’ve had for years, are married to one, or are an accomplished actor, do not under any circumstances try to show off your version of the Aussie accent. You’ll just end up sounding like an Englishman crossed with a redneck.
And as a final note, I would like to say that both Canada and New Zealand are beautiful places with beautiful people