Some stereotypes stick for a reason. Do you know an Australian who doesn’t drink? Neither do I.

Australians don’t just drink occasionally. They drink aggressively, often, and with a determination that is baffling and commendable. I love them! Other nationalities disapprove of public displays of drunkenness. Not the Aussies. They encourage it. And while Aussie English is sometimes difficult to decipher (what with the accent and colorful use of the English language), Drunken Aussie English is mostly straightforward and fairly simple to comprehend.

“One more?”
Translation: Don’t even think of leaving the bar. The phrase, “One more?” is rhetorical.

“One more, mate?”
Translation: I said “mate” now sit the fuck back down or you can forget you know me. This phrase is a sweetly veiled command.

“Another one?”
Translation: You’re not drunk yet therefore you can’t leave. In the states, we’d say (ask) “Should we have another one?” followed by either “No, I’ve got to deliver a baby at 6:30.” or “Fuck it. I hate my wife.”

“Dan! How are you mate? Do you know Dan?”
Translation: Dan hasn’t had a beer with us. We’ve got to have a beer with Dan. In this situation “Dan” could be a real “mate” or just a random stranger who looked like he’d make a good drinking buddy.

“Shall we (head on)?”
Translation: Don’t be fooled. This does not mean “Shall we (head on home)?” This means, “Shall we (head on to another bar)?” Again, this is rhetorical.

Not long ago, an Aussie friend told me that he was impressed by my drinking skills because I was able to keep up with a pub full of Aussies. I was initially honored by his comment, but soon became concerned. A week later, another Aussie friend apparently tripped and fell on his way back home after we’d been out drinking. In steep and hilly Hong Kong, a nasty fall could mean death.

“I woke up black and blue!!!” he announced.

“Were you OK?” I asked.

“Yeah! I don’t remember falling. No worries.”

I remember taking a cab home that night, remember inhaling a pre-pub prepared, post-pub devoured snack. I’m beginning to worry.

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