“Has anyone seen my red thong?!”


“Has anyone seen my red thong?”

In response to what I thought was a seemingly innocent question, my American teacher stood in front of me, slack jaw, with an utterly horrified expression plastered on his face. For all those confused-as-I-was Aussies out there, a friend later told me that Americans call the pieces of rubber you wear on your feet ‘flip-flops’ and a thong a little piece of lacey clothing worn down under.

Green School is a melting pot of nationalities. As mentioned during Ban Ki-Moon’s visit (find out more here), our bamboo learning playground is United Nations.  And with 400+ students from across the globe, there are bound to be a few instances of perdu dans les traductions (lost in translations).

Shamefully, in my two years here, the Americano accent has somewhat rubbed off on me… However, each and every day I am surprised at the strange and stranger slang interpretations that popup.

Here are a few of my favourites:

–          Mate vs. Friend

–          Budgie Smugglers vs. Banana Hammock (Bike Shorts)

–          Togs vs. Swimsuit

–          Tuning vs. Friends with Benefits

–          Chips vs. French Fries

–          Sheila vs. Chick

–          Bogan vs. Redneck

–          Rubber vs. Eraser

–          Arvo vs. Afternoon

–          OJ vs. Orange juice

–          Chook vs. Chicken

–          Barbie vs. BBQ

–           “It’s a stinker!” vs. “It is a hawt day”

–          “We’re up the creek,” vs. “We’re in trouble.”

–          “I reckon,” vs. “I think, I guess….”

–          “Strewth! Crikey!” vs. “Oh my EAGLE, that’s a surprise!” (I’m making the bird thing up…)

–          “Naf,” vs. “Lame.”

–          “Bloody oath,” vs. “Totally.”  

–          “No worries,” vs. “Don’t beat yourself up.”

–          “Wishy-washy,” vs. “Indecisive.”


And some other famous Australian Sayings…

“Nah but.”


“Fair dinkum.”

“Yeah no.”

“Yeah but.”


“Bloody keen for Kuta!”

*Thank you to all of my Australian and American friends for contributing to this article, including the wonderful Ibu Jen from the Art Studio



About Author

Hi, my name's Clover (yes, like the lucky weed). Born and bred in Queensland, Australia, I grew up in a family of advertising creatives, film directors and budding authors. I have always loved writing and have a passion for journalism + blogging, whether it be on Tumblr or Tulisan for Green School-- the coolest place ever. I am currently a Sophomore, in American terms.

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