Yes, they’re our closest neighbour. And, yes, many of us Kiwis — myself included — move to Australia for a better job and more pay. But that doesn’t mean we have to like each other! It’s a mutual hate, one that rears its ugly head anytime there’s a rugby game between our two countries, or in fact any sporting event. We all remember the Underarm Incident. But it’s all in fun, and when you have the ANZAC spirit behind you, it’s a bit of brotherly love in the end.
2. Sheep jokes
We’re not sheep shaggers. We’ve been the butt — no pun intended — of sheep jokes for years. It comes down to the fact that there are a lot of sheep in New Zealand. At one point in the ’80s there was a 22:1 ratio of sheep to people.
3. Being asked, “Where in Australia are you from?”
This goes back to #1. It’s one of my pet hates. Do not ask me what part of Australia I’m from. Do ask, “Where are you from?” Don’t assume you know. I’m sure the Canadians out there can attest to this too.
4. The French
Ever since the 1985 sinking of the Greenpeace protest ship Rainbow Warrior in Auckland, there’s been a bit of fist shaking when talking about the French. Their cause wasn’t helped when in 1999 they kicked us out of the Rugby World Cup semifinal. Or when they kicked us out of the quarterfinals in the 2007 RWC.
5. Losing at rugby
Kiwis pride themselves on being good at whatever they do, and rugby’s no exception. But being the best at something means you have to work hard to keep it that way. So it really, really sucks when you lose. The All Blacks have been at the top of the rugby nations for as long as anyone can remember, but when they lose all hell can break loose amongst the rugby-watching public.
6. Nuclear power
Since 1984, New Zealand’s barred nuclear-powered or -armed ships from entering our waters and using our ports. We remain proudly nuclear free, and we haven’t backed down to any nuclear-business heavyweights like the USA.
7. Being at the arse end of the world
For the most part it’s great — clean open spaces, away from the craziness that is the rest of the world. However, there are times when being stuck on the bottom is pretty sucky. Like when travel prices mean you have to live on two-minute noodles for six months beforehand. Or when your favourite band’s doing a world tour, but the closest place they’re visiting is Australia. So you have to save for months on end just so you can afford a weekend in Sydney.
8. People taking the “pus out of our eccent” (translation: piss out of our accent)
We don’t say “fush and chups.” We don’t say “sux” instead of “six.” The worst thing’s when people try to ‘speak like a Kiwi.’ It usually ends up being a weird combination of South African, Australian, and English. It’s just not right. Neither is it correct.
I’m sure every country has that one city everyone else loves to hate. For Kiwis, it’s Auckland, our biggest city and gateway to our amazing country. They have a saying that “nothing exists below the Bombay Hills.” The rest of us have a word for them too: “JAFA” (just another f**ken Aucklander). But they do have a gorgeous harbour up there!
10. “You’re from New Zealand? Oh, you must know blah blah.”
No, no I don’t know your friend Sally who moved to New Zealand in 1989 and lives on a completely different island to me. We didn’t get to meet when Peter Jackson put on his annual New Zealand picnic — those darn hobbits are tricky and kept getting in everyone’s way!