Please bring a plate, and other NZisms to beware

By Toby Manhire In The Internaut

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A very New Zealand plate.

A blog post by British expat Abigail Simpson details “10 silly things Kiwis say” for anyone planning a visit to New Zealand.

The usual suspects are there. “She’ll be right”, “Yeah-nah”, “Choice” and “Sweet as” (“Kiwis have a disconcerting habit of not finishing similes. Though ‘sweet as’ is the most common, practically any adjective can be placed before the ‘as’.”)

One of the warnings, however, I hadn’t realised was unique to our vernacular: Bring a plate, “an instruction that has tripped up many a new immigrant to New Zealand, including my mum”, advises Simpson.

If you get invited to a party and the host tells you to ‘Bring a plate’, they don’t mean ‘We don’t have enough plates for so many people, so bring one of your own’, they mean ‘Bring a portion of food for everyone to share …’ You don’t want to see the look on the host’s face when you show up with an empty plate expecting them to put food on it for you.


The full list:

1. Sweet as

2. Choice

3. Not even

4. Ow

5. Yeah-nah

6. Good on ya, mate

7. Bring a plate

8. Lollies

9. Dairy

10. She’ll be right


See also: American in NZ struggles with local duction

20 cliches of journalism

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