“Cheerio Mates, It’s me, your good pal Jeremy here, ready to clue you in on the wide world of vegemite and barbie!” Now most of you are wondering what bloody planet I was just kicked off of to be speaking such rubbish. The truth is, no language has a hard fast rule to its speaker’s vocabulary and the odds are many of you have heard words such as “cheerio,” “barbie,” and “rubbish” in the past, but how about the more offbeat like “fair dinkum” or “bung?” Even for a native speaker, the meaning of these words is far from intuitive. Any guesses? Well, the former refers to anything that is authentic and truly genuine In Australia, while the latter signifies giving something a toss or also can be a bribing an official. As you can see, “bung” is a perfect example of how complex languages can be – words can assume a variety of complex meanings based on random happenstance and usage: but, fear not for technology has given us a solution.
“Say What” is a brand new app that allows users to discover thousands of colloquial terms across the English speaking world. From England to Jamaica, Scotland to Australia, this innovative tool enables the user to search categorically, by country, or by phrase in order to find easy-to-understand definitions. We know that linguistics is an ever changing domain and, for this reason, the developer has ingeniously created a “submit your own phrase” portion so that her app can constantly adapt and develop itself from an intimately global perspective. Not only does the app provide eccentric terminology from around the globe, it also can be used to translate phrases easily and clearly into American English. Thus, the developers brainchild is a novel, game changing, app for the world traveler and is bound to shake up the tourism (or should I say gronckle?) industry.
At any rate, at the present moment there seems to be more of a focus on the slang from other English speaking countries, rather than the United States. However, we know America still provides a vast majority of colloquialisms worldwide so I am sure that her “submit a phrase” feature will level the scope of terminology
For all you world travelers out there, we finally have an app to help you feel less touristy and more authentic.
So before we sign off, download this creative new app and you will never say “what” again!