Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Australia: Making immigrants feel welcome since 1788

I've been having fun with a newly arrived Canadian. Well, okay, maybe rather than "having fun with", the phrase I was looking for might be "making fun of".

I can tell he's newly arrived because he talks funny. His latest faux pas was telling us a story in which he used the sentence: "I fell on my fanny". In amongst our hysterics, we did explain to him that as far as the Australian/NZ/whole bloody rest of the world's sense of the word is concerned he doesn't have one of those to fall on, but he didn't seem convinced.

I like laughing at Foreigners. Makes a change from them laughing at me.* (We still had the mandatory laugh-at-the-NZ-accent part of the conversation, though, never fear.**)

* I realise that technically, being an immigrant, I get to be the foreigner and all the Australians around me don't, but they sure sound foreign to me.

** If you ever get the chance to talk to a New Zealander who has lived in New Zealand for at least some of the last decade, make them read this sentence aloud: "This bear here has a fear of appearing to spill his spare beer on the dear little fair-haired deer". Then you can have a good chuckle.


Morton T Fogg said...

You need to be more careful with Canadians -- they've very fragile and bruise easily. They don't have nearly as much experience as other North Americans in terms of being made fun of while abroad!

turtlebella said...

Oh I dunno mtf, have a Canadian in the lab I work in here in the US, and we almost never stop making fun of him!

I love the fanny thing. A friend of mine used what we Americans call a fanny pack instead of a purse. She left it at another friend's house, who happened to be English. When American friend called English friend to enquire about her "fanny pack" the English friend nearly died from embarrassment and/or laughing. Thereafter I found any excuse to say "fanny" in English friend's presence. This sometimes devolved into childish, "Fanny! Fanny! Fanny!" Never a dull moment, I tell ya.

StyleyGeek said...

This Canadian took it in good humour, I think, Morton T Fogg.

And Turtlebella, I love the fanny pack thing too. I think it is the most hilarious term, and it always leaves me with visions of someone trying to insert the whole thing in th... Actually, I think I'll stop there.

We call them bumbags.

Morton T Fogg said...

Well, then, crap! I guess I keep getting sent the wrong Canadians. The ones I keep getting are great people, nice, friendly, fun, etc, but a little on the thin-skinned side.

Fortunately, I always keep my receipts and can get refunds.

StyleyGeek said...

You have to pay a little more for good quality, you know. And know where to shop.