Gah, Keneally <shudder>. I’m counting the days until that stupid woman is out of office. And I’m a citizen now, and I can vote so I can help do it. She’s embarrassing.
That said, her American accent is still stronger than mine, and I’ve only been here in Australia 8 years. I moved all over the US before (Mississippi to California to Michigan to Vegas). I was always somewhat of an accent chameleon because I made an effort to ditch my Southern accent as a teenager. Now I have a tendency to just pick up what I hear. People tell me I sound like Kenealy, but the difference is that she’s trying and I’m not. Plus, I haven’t been back to the US since 2006, and I suspect she goes back more often than me. Would that the bitch would stay…
As for word usage, it just depends. I still say ‘trash’ and not ‘rubbish’ and ‘trashcan’ instead of ‘rubbish bin’. Mostly this is so my husband gets crazy, cause he (Australian) has a thing about not calling it trash. It’s not serious business for him, he’s not really yelling or anything, and it is amusing me to make him go “GAH! IT’S RUBBISH NOT TRASH! GAHH!!!”
Other Americanisms I cling to are flashlight instead of torch, sidewalk and not footpath, and aluminum instead of aluminium. The last because I can’t say aluminium without stumbling on it.
I say ‘loo’ instead of bathroom, because it’s toilet instead of bathroom in the alternate, and bathroom bugs Australians and toilet bugs me, so loo it is.
Have picked up the overuse of the word ‘mate’. I still say ‘pop’ instead of ‘soft drink’. There are handy Australian words that don’t have direct analogs, and I use them - wanker and rort, for example. Onya and Goodonya grace my speech more often that not. It’s coriander and not cilantro, or I’m not eating much or finding it the grocery store, and the same with chick peas instead of garbanzo beans and prawns instead of shrimp.
I also find my self popping round to places, like shops. This is new and I’ve only started saying it recently, and I don’t know why. I also ‘walk up the shops’ when I clearly mean I’m going to the store, but I only catch it after I hear myself say it.
I do not say ‘me’ for ‘my’ unless I mean to do it as a joke, but that’s because my friends and my husband don’t do it. My husband will ever so occasionally, but he has to be really tired or really drunk. I suspect because he’s very well educated but his mother is not and she says it a lot. His mum has a more stereotypical Paul Hogan type accent, whereas my husband (and most Australians) don’t sound like that at all.
My son is 15 and came here when he was 8, but his accent sounds (to me) to be stronger than mine even still - although he now goes to a country boarding school and he’s lost a lot even in the last year. He says all the expected Aussie boy things, most recently trending toward ending all sentences with “I know, hey?” which is driving me mad - although I suspect this is an Aussie kid slang thing that will go away and be replaced with something else. Last year it was ending everything with the word ‘but’ as in, “Yeah, I was gonna go but…” He also uptalks, so everything he says sounds like a question, which is another Aussie kid thing.
As a family thing, my son calls me mom and when he writes (on Facebook for example) he refers to me as mom, and not mum. This is our choice. He cops shit (heh, there’s an Aussie phrase for you) from his mates, but he tells them that it is what I chose to be called, the same as his Sudanese friends don’t call their mother ‘mum’ but the word for it in Sudanese.