Australians go out of their way to confuse us Americans. For instance, they drive on the left. Of course, after my excellent driving lessons in Botswana this is not a problem for me. But I did save the life of a tourist the other day when he failed to look in the right direction and stepped out into traffic.
They love using colloquialisms and odd terminology. Recently I saw the following description on a wine bottle: “…with green apple and fairy floss characters leaping out of the glass…” In case you were wondering- I certainly hope you were!- fairy floss is cotton candy. While I’m not a wine connoisseur, since when does wine taste like cotton candy?!?
The best “weird Australianism” I’ve found thus far may be the fact that they love to watch “THE footy”. There is no such thing as just, plain, old, vanilla, “footy.” It is “THE footy.” The problem with “THE footy” is that there are FOUR different sports which qualify as “THE footy.” I have watched countless games, done research, drawn graphics on whiteboards and still cannot describe the differences between these four sports. You know that Australian guy on the 49ers, Jarryd Hayne? They’ve been talking about him a lot on the news here. The other day they showed a clip from a U.S. news station. The U.S. news station referred to Hayne as an Australian rugby player. Well, the Australian new anchors got all bent out of shape, saying, “He’s NOT a rugby player! The Americans don’t know what they are talking about!” So, what did I do? I looked it up. Hayne was a National Rugby League (NRL) player. Rugby is IN THE TITLE! I am SO confused.
My most recent experience of the vast conspiracy in which Australians plot to confuse Americans is that they moved Father’s Day! Mother’s Day remains the same.
And I have to say, I’m terribly disappointed by the Australian version of Father’s Day. This pretty much sums up Father’s Day in Australia:
After all, the Aussies love their barbeque. This was demonstrated in all the stores as the Father’s Day section sold only two things: barbeque supplies:
And books about sports. If you would like to do your own reading about THE footy, and other sports in Australia, including competitive sheep shearing, here were some great suggestions, all on sale for Father’s Day!:
But THE WORST part about Father’s Day in Australia (besides the fact my awesome dad was back in the U.S.) is that these people do not know how to do greeting cards. Speaking of my dad, we have this tradition where we like to look at greeting cards together. We don’t necessarily have to buy any, but we can easily spend an hour in Walmart looking at cards, laughing and then telling the other person, “The one’s the best, you have to read it!” Well, I think Australia has forever ruined greeting card browsing for me. This was the greeting card display for Father’s Day:
Yup, that’s it. I looked at every single one of them and not one made me laugh. The one thing I found curious was that there was ONE to dad from son card. And ONE to dad from wife card. There were NO to dad from daughter cards. Apparently Australians only have sons. Who would have guessed?
In the end, this was the best card I could find, and the one I sent my dad:
I spent $7.00 on a very boring card which only resulted in me missing my dad, and then $3.00 to mail it to the U.S. I’m not sure whether Hallmark has considered investing in the Australian market, but I do believe the sky is the limit here as the current standard is incredibly low. In the meantime, here’s a more appropriate father’s day greeting for my dad:
Happy Father’s Day!