There’s a moment – and we’ve all had it – when you realise the English language is an absolutely joke. It’s that moment when you learn that there’s no rhyme, reason, logic, or order to it, and that lies like “i before e except after c” only exist to instil a false sense of security in you.
And that moment, friends, is when you learn how to spell ‘Wednesday’.
Yup, the English language is shambles, but there’s not a lot we can do about it, and Australians have spent decades shortening, colloqusalising, and ochre-ing the shit out of any word that crosses our path. We’re pretty fukken good at it, too.
Which is where Linguistics Roadshow comes in. They’ve put together an interactive project that gives our widely varied and geographically-specific Aussie slang the data analysis it so deserve.
Behold… maps. Australian maps. Ones that will show you exactly who is using what slang around Australia, and more importantly, who exactly is calling nosebleeds ‘blood noses’ so you can march on down there and politely inform them that THAT IS NOT A THING.
Enjoy / fight about it / do with the following what you will:
[IMPORTANT: if the below maps just look grey, that’s because Linguistics Roadshows’ servers are overloaded. They’re working on it, dw – just check back later. And if you CAN see the heat maps with all the different colours, then pls ignore us, continue on with your glorious day.]
What do you call a battered, deep-friend potato snack?
What general term do you use to refer to swimwear?
What do you call the object that you might drink water from in a park or school?
What do you call a barbecued sausage, served in a single slice of bread?
Which term do you use when someone’s nose is bleeding?
What do you call the place where you might buy lunch at school?
Does the word ‘dance’ rhyme with ‘pants’, or ‘aunts’?
What do you call the small local shop that sells newspapers, lollies, drinks and basic groceries?
What do you call a frozen, water-based sweet treat?
Which of these would you use to describe kissing someone?
What is your most common way of expressing laughter when chatting online, or in texts?
What is your preferred way of describing a thing or situation that is pretty good?