Last night I went into my local convenience store to get a phone card (I regularly call international numbers, and phone cards are the cheapest way to do so). The attendant seemed to be a recent migrant, as he spoke with a somewhat heavy accent which I couldn’t quite place; possibly Middle-Eastern or southern European.

But he does seem very determined to integrate with the Australian society. In the course of a 40-second commercial transaction, he called me “mate” at least eight times. And he said it the Aussie way, with a very open “a”, sounding almost like “mite”. Way to go, mate!

2 Comments so far

  1. Piers (unregistered) on August 22nd, 2005 @ 6:38 pm

    today’s readers’ poll in The Age is “Is it offensive for strangers to call you ‘mate’?”

  2. Piers (unregistered) on August 23rd, 2005 @ 6:55 pm

    24% yes, 76% no.

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