Educating Seppo

Since arriving to American shores it has been a genuine indulgence of mine indoctrinating locals with a sense of redundant ‘Dundee-Australiana’, disseminating a variety of Hogan-era phrases to willing and none the wiser yanks.

Coercing Americans to refer to themselves and their fellow countryfolk as ‘Seppos’ is one of my finer achievements; having them refer to their displeasures and untoward tribulations as respective bunches of ‘Seppo bullshit’ an even more commanding exploit.

It’s mighty good fun, and you can get away with a fair bit.

My good mate and transcontinental truck driving consort Taylor has been the most attentive student so far for my Australiana 101 prosletysm. I fear that come the day he attempts to set foot onto Australian turf he will be severely punched for his command of my bastardised lingo and somewhat misrepresented take on the ways of modern day Australia.

Nonetheless, here are some core snippets from the lexicon.


Bogan is by far the most enjoyed slang word by folk on this end, unique, easily remembered by the American mind, visually adaptable to mulleted countryfolk that dwell about the Midwest and southern nooks.


Rhyming slang is an uncommon concept for most Americans. While many understand the premise behind ‘Septic Tank’, some have slagged me off on the basis that using ‘Yank’ in a blanket context is historically erroneous in the context of the American civil war. I usually respond with an assertion that this is a bunch of seppo bullshit. End conversation.


Like a bogan, but faster.

I enjoyed Urban Dictionary’s take: A loud, inconsiderate person, usually found in groups for self preservation. Sometimes prone to violence, always found with beer and cheap smokes. Usually smell.

Well said.


Running low on new words to channel, I looked to inspiration from Home and Away’s Alf Stewart. Most Americans are confused by the term ‘drongo’ and it is not an easy one to convey.

Urban Dictionary enlists drongo as a "no-hoper" or fool, derived from a racehorse of that name in the 1920's that never won a race out of 37 starts.


Like drongo, larriken is a comparable struggle, not terribly easy to explain without immediate context. It is also not easy to remember, Taylor doing his best and refering to some jovial loons as ‘Lazarus’ at some point. Another time he called someone a ‘Leffert’, clearly confused as we drove along ‘Lefferts avenue’ through Queens.


Construed Streuth as being interchangeable for ‘shit’, ‘wow’ or ‘whoa’ – an expression of shock and or dismay, dependant on context and severity of subject. Understood, but unpopular so far.


Was sure to clarify the expression of dag in relation to ‘dork’, ‘doofus’ and ‘nerd’ before the literal connotation as sundried shit ensnared in the clumpy hair of a sheep’s arse. Urban dictionary describes dag as an ‘affectionate insult for an odd, idiosyncratic person’.

Dag has rapidly become a favorite mutual term of endearment between my significant other and I. Dagster, Dagette and Dagger all acceptable adaptations.

Too Right

Our favourite barman at the local pub ‘the Cuckoo’s Nest’ was a bloke named Rob. Hailing from Bendigo, it was always an absolute breath of fresh air to be served by a fellow Victorian and be able to chat with someone who can instantly appreciate the home tongue. Rob has since skipped the country, leaving me with the mantle of the last Australian in Woodside. However, his immortal catchphrase ‘Too Right’ is honoured and remembered by all who admired him and his work.

Daggy Drongo

Taylor got way too ahead of himself, attempting to harmonize terms in a simultaneous context. Efforts to dissuade him from using the expression ‘Daggy drongo’ were met with insubordination.

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