Having written two books about our lost and vanishing Australian language – Lost for Words and Words Fail Me (ABC Books) – I was pleased to see in yesterday’s Weekend Australian Magazine (Dec 1) that Phillip Adams is complaining about the same thing.
“Our slang is on the verge of extinction,” Phillip wrote, and added that we are being “reduced to cultural mimicry”.
People remember six phrases from the past, and think that’s it: bonzer bottler sheila, etc. But we have lost so much, I was able to fill 750 pages. Wouldn’t that blow a hole in your nightie!
Australians have forgotten the world’s oldest saying: “If you control the language, you control the situation.”
One journalist who interviewed me about Lost for Words had never heard of the word “skite”. I told him: The only thing worse than a cow with a kind face is a horse with a sulky behind!
When a bloke I know was leading a school group on a bushwalk, he paused on the track and asked “Do you want a spell?” The children didn’t answer and stood waiting for him to do something Harry Potter-ish.
Invitation to unveiling of bust
The bust of Ken Fletcher in Ken Fletcher Park opposite Pat Rafter Arena at Tennyson will be unveiled during the Brisbane International tournament at 9 a.m. on Sunday 29 Dec 2013 by Brisbane Lord Mayor Graham Quirk.