Here are Richard Glover’s 43 top ways to tell if you’re a local.
You know you’re Australian if …
1. You know the meaning of the word “girt”.
2. You believe that stubbies can be either drunk or worn.
3. You think it’s normal to have a Treasurer called Wayne.
4. You waddle when you walk due to the 53 expired petrol discount vouchers stuffed in your wallet or purse.
5. You’ve made a bong out of your garden hose rather than use it for something illegal such as watering the garden.
6. You believe it is appropriate to put a rubber in your son’s pencil case when he first attends school.
7. When you hear that an American “roots for his team” you wonder how often and with whom.
8. You understand that the phrase “a group of women wearing black thongs” refers to footwear and may be less alluring than it sounds.
9. You pronounce Melbourne as “Mel-bin”.
10. You pronounce Penrith as “Pen-riff”.
11. You believe the “l” in the word “Australia” is optional.
12. You can translate: “Dazza and Shazza played Acca Dacca on the way to Maccas.”
13. You believe it makes perfect sense for a nation to decorate its highways with large fibreglass bananas, prawns and sheep.
14. You call your best friend “a total bastard” but someone you really, truly despise is just “a bit of a bastard”.
15. You think “Woolloomooloo” is a perfectly reasonable name for a place.
16. You’re secretly proud of our killer wildlife.
17. You believe it makes sense for a country to have a $1 coin that’s twice as big as its $2 coin.
18. You understand that “Wagga Wagga” can be abbreviated to “Wagga” but “Woy Woy” can’t be called “Woy”.
19. You believe that cooked-down axlegrease makes a good breakfast spread.
20. You believe all famous Kiwis are actually Australian, until they stuff up, at which point they again become Kiwis.
21. Hamburger. Beetroot. Of course.
22. You know that certain words must, by law, be shouted out during any rendition of the Angels’ song Am I Ever Gonna See Your Face Again.
23. You believe, as an article of faith, that the confectionary known as the Wagon Wheel hasbecome smaller with every passing year.
24. You still don’t get why the “Labor” in “Australian Labor Party” is not spelt with a “u”.
25. You wear ugh boots outside the house.
26. You believe, as an article of faith, that every important discovery in the world was made by an Australian but then sold off to the Yanks for a pittance.
27. You believe that the more you shorten someone’s name the more you like them.
28. Whatever your linguistic skills, you find yourself able to order takeaway fluently in every Asian language.
29. You understand that “excuse me” can sound rude, while “scuse me” is always polite.
30. You know what it’s like to swallow a fly, on occasion via your nose.
31. You understand that “you” has a plural and that it’s “youse”.
32. You know it’s not summer until the steering wheel is too hot to handle.
33. Your biggest family argument over the summer concerned the rules for beach cricket.
34. You shake your head in horror when companies try to market what they call “Anzac cookies”.
35. You still think of Kylie as “that girl off Neighbours”.
36. When returning home from overseas, you expect to be brutally strip-searched by Customs – just in case you’re trying to sneak in fruit.
37. You believe the phrase “smart casual” refers to a pair of black tracky-daks, suitably laundered.
38. You understand that all train timetables are works of fiction.
39. When working on a bar, you understand male customers will feel the need to offer an excuse whenever they order low-alcohol beer.
40. You get choked up with emotion by the first verse of the national anthem and then have trouble remembering the second.
41. You find yourself ignorant of nearly all the facts deemed essential in the government’s new test for migrants.
42. You know, whatever the tourist books say, that no one says “cobber”.
43. And you will immediately forward this list to other Australians, here and overseas, realising that only they will understand.
Happy Australia Day.
First published in the Sydney Morning Herald, January 26, 2008.