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What the world thinks about Australians

1. No, I do not ride kangaroos everywhere or have them as pets

Look, as much as I’d love to nod and say yes, I do have a pet joey named Skippy who use to hop me to school and play with me in my back yard, I can’t I’m sorry. As a result of pesky foreign advertisers, the people of the world think that Australia is a vast red country where we are surrounded by bush land and live near a billabong with our tucker bags. They find it hard to grasp the idea that we like in cities, with buildings, and automobiles.

2. Yes, I speak English, not Australian 

You laugh but this is a very common question, maybe even the most common.

3. They’re called prawns, not shrimps 

If you are Australian and you have travelled overseas you would have definitely heard the ol line “throw another shrimp on the barbie” and wanted to throttle Paul Hogan and the whole 1984 tourism Australia advertising team. Not only will you hear it, you will hear it again, and again, and again, and again.

4. We don’t drink Fosters 

And we haven’t since the 1970’s. Although overseas the brand is advertised as being true blue Aussie, the lager which was formally brewed by the Carlton United Beverages group, became vastly unpopular in aus throughout the early 2000s when the group decided to focus on promoting Carlton Draught and Victoria Bitter.

5. I live somewhere other than Sydney

Yeah, and not Melbourne either. Get use to trying to explain to foreigners that Australia is actually a fairly large island, and it might help to have a go to map on your phone because you are going to be asked this a lot.

6. We do have things that kill you, but I never come in contact with them

The funniest thing to do when you’re in conversation with a foreigner about Australia is list the things that can kill you in Australia. Not only are you getting a few laughs, but you are doing your nation proud making sure that they are never going to want to immigrate to a place with this many things that can kill you. Mentioning things like the bird eating spider is my personal favourite, they don’t need to know that it lives in far north East Queensland…

7. I do not surf all the time 

Cheers Roxy and Billabong for making foreigners think we’re all tanned with long blonde beach hair and wearing a bikini 72% of the time. You can imagine the shock they get when a pale faced, black haired girl tells them she’s from Australia. “You’re from Australia, why are you so white?” “You can’t just ask someone why they’re white…”

8. Dingoes are not as common as foxes are to you

Never seen one, probably never will. Dingos are classified as a sub species of grey wolf and are on the verge of extinction, so no, they aren’t running around our streets.

9. I don’t greet people with g’day 

I don’t even think someone else under the age of 30 has ever greeted me with a “g’day”.

10. Koalas are actually vicious, not cuddly 

Oh koalas are so cute! They look so cuddly, soft and small and just hang about in the trees all day, getting high off of eucalyptus. False. Firstly, they’re big fuckers, some grow up to 15kgs big. Secondly, if they get agitated they have sharp claws and teeth to defend themselves with, which is why carers always use protective gear to handle them. Thirdly, chlamydia. Yes, some experts say that up to 90% of Australia’s koala population have contracted the disease from unprotected sex (although I’m not sure where they expect the little guys to find a condom). Sharing these koala facts with foreigners is fun because you can see them die a little inside when they realise the animal they once had known and loved is actually a fat and incredibly violent little slut.

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