Sunday, December 13, 2015


Sent to me by Leo . . .

The following are results from an OZ-words Competition where entrants were asked to take an Australian word, alter it by one letter only, and supply a witty definition.

Clearly, you need to be an Aussie to understand.

Billabonk: to make passionate love beside a waterhole 

Bludgie: a partner who doesn't work, but is kept as a pet 

Dodgeridoo: a fake indigenous artefact 

Fair drinkum: good-quality Aussie wine 

Flatypus: a cat that has been run over by a vehicle 

Mateshit: all your flat mate's belongings, lying strewn around the floor 

Yabble: the unintelligible language of Australian freshwater crustaceans 

Bushwanker: a pretentious drongo, who reckons he's above average when it comes to handling himself in the scrub 

Crackie-daks: 'hipster' tracksuit pants.


My receipt of Leo’s email coincided with Bindi Irwin winning the current season of the US Dancing with the Stars, which started me thinking: Why would someone name their child after a nasty seed that sticks in your bare feet in summer? We called the seeds bindis or bindi-eyes and it was like getting caught in a minefield if you had walked onto a lawn that you then discovered was infested with the nasty seeds. Rolf Harris’s daughter, the one who accompanied him daily to court, is also named Bindi. 


Bindi Irwin with Hedwig

Bindi Harris with Rolf

According to Bindi Irwin her name ‘Bindi’ comes from the name of her father's favourite female crocodile at the Australia Zoo and that it is an Australian Aboriginal word that means "young girl". 

A bindi is also the red dot that Hindu women put on their forehead that is representative of the third eye chakra. Apparently the word comes from the Sanskrit “Bindu” meaning a point or dot. 

I haven’t been able to discover how an Aboriginal word meaning “young girl” also refers to those prickly burrs. 

"You know it's summer when the frangipani flower in their happy colours, when the eucalypt blossom provides a feast for the rosellas - and when the bindi-eyes in your lawn punish you for going barefoot."

- The Australian 3 January 2015

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