June 09, 2004


Go to this ABC website, click on "Words A-Z" in the left-hand menu, then click "A", then click "Aboriginal suitcase." Helpfully, the site also provides a definition for "gin's handbag".

Via reader Michael C., who notes: "What a wonderful organisation."

UPDATE. What is with lefties and the word jigaboo? First Niall, and now Chris Sheil ...

UPDATE II. All fixed at Sheilville.

Posted by Tim Blair at June 9, 2004 03:05 PM

What the...?

Posted by: Greg at June 9, 2004 at 03:32 PM

What dopes they are. Seriously,first it was Margo's "nigger in the woodpile" then we have Niall's continued racism with "jiggaboo" after having made poor remarks about a vietnamese man,compounded again by Chris Sheil's incorrect use of the term.

Do these guys have any idea? What hypocrites!

There is one rule for some.

Posted by: nic at June 9, 2004 at 03:42 PM

"It's with effort I reply tim, given your manner toward our colleague Niall, who offered slight provocation"-- Chris Sheil

Posted by: Gary at June 9, 2004 at 03:51 PM

I can't recall the phrase now, but when I visited WA many years ago I heard used a slang term for a way of drinking one of those big cheap jugs of wine (one finger in the loop while resting the jug on the shoulder). Can an Aussie help me out? I'm thinking "flaggin a wobbler" or something like that, but that's not it.

Posted by: mh at June 9, 2004 at 04:11 PM

Sounds like Chris is a few lamingtons short of a CWA meeting.

Posted by: narkynark at June 9, 2004 at 04:13 PM

Congrats Tim, you hit that straw man straight between the eyes. Of course, if a term like that wasn't included in the site, you could have always dismissed the ABC as being politically correct, or of stifling free speech or something. It's a win-win situation. And, to get an even truer glimpse of the spirit of reconcilation at work, have a look at some of the comments by your fans. Top stuff!

Posted by: Jimbo Jones at June 9, 2004 at 04:20 PM


I will cop that but counter by saying that the right wingers who post on this site dont sneer at others, advocate one opinion though display the opposite.

Lets take Niall as a case in point:

While we're on the subject of cocktwaddle, I see and hear now an enormous outrage over the ABC children's program Play School daring to screen a childs day out with her Mums. That's right, mum'S' plural. The child is being brought up in a *GASP* same-sex relationship family. Federal Minister for Narrow-Mindedness and Bigotry, Larry Anthony is aghast.

"I am concerned that the ABC are putting on these types of programs," he said. "Quite frankly when it comes to my children, if I want explain about same sex couples that should be up to parents. It should be up to me, not the Australian broadcaster."
Mr Anthony obviously has never watched Play School or just doesn't understand its purpose. Play School presenter, Reece Muldoon sums up its purpose admirably.
"To actually get in there and criticise Play School over showing what's not just mum and dad [and] a white picket fence... that's been Play School's job for a long time now, to show life is very diverse,"
And that, Ladies and Gents, is the crux of the problem. The Howard Cabal, Labor Party strategists, and heterosexual bigots across the country fail to realise that life is very, very diverse. Time to wake up, methinks.

Hetrosexual Bigots. That must be different from say......, racial bigots?

Say one thing and do another whether it be cars or attitudes to others. Makes me sick.

Posted by: nic at June 9, 2004 at 04:32 PM


Give me a break. You think if I went scouring through that ABC dictionary and didn't find "Aboriginal suitcase" that I'd be screaming political correctness?

If that's so, my own site is PC because I've never used the phrase.

As for comments, they are the responsibility of commentators. I erase anything too vile, if I happen to see it.

Posted by: tim at June 9, 2004 at 04:50 PM

Tim, yes I laid it on a bit too thick, didn't I? Still, it reads well. And I know that comments aren't your responsibility; but the synchronicity between this post and the comments in the other one was too nice to pass up. Cheers.

Posted by: Jimbo Jones at June 9, 2004 at 05:08 PM

Suitcase? They surely mean "wilcannia handbag."

Posted by: EvilDan at June 9, 2004 at 05:16 PM

EvilDan, I couldn't find Wilcannia handbag listed under W (underneath the nice pic of the Webber barbecue - pity it's not Australian); nor could I find wobbly ( as in throwing one), or wanker(as in member of the ABC collective).
Stone the crows, they must be a few cows short in the front yard.

Posted by: narkynark at June 9, 2004 at 05:53 PM

Practically every dictionary I've ever seen would include a note to the effect the use was "vulgar slang" or "offensive slang." Didn't notice that at the ABC website.

Posted by: John Nowak at June 9, 2004 at 06:09 PM

I couldn't find "Lady in a rowin' boat", either. When I lived in the NT in the mid-90s it was a well used expression by the Traditional Owners when asking for a cask of Coolibah, the Moselle I think.

Posted by: Razor at June 9, 2004 at 06:16 PM

OT: this is pretty funny. Note the date. oops.

Posted by: a at June 9, 2004 at 06:19 PM

The term you are looking for is "flagon of woobler", that refers to a gallon jug (flagon) of cheap wine (woobler).

Has been overtaken by the "silver bladder in the cardboard box" wine these days, particularly the cheap stuff.

Much favored in remote areas is the "Coolabah" brand "Moselle".
Does NOT come from the German Mosel region, let me assure you.

Posted by: Pedro the Ignorant at June 9, 2004 at 07:13 PM

THANKS PEDRO! You are certainly not ignorant, sir. My favorite aussie brand refreshment, however, is not wine but Red Back. If I could figure a way to get a few flagons of Red Back through the mail...

Posted by: mh at June 9, 2004 at 08:01 PM

Jimbo: I'm not really sure what your problem is with that comment thread. Are you referring to the insult-tossing "Kernel Failure" troll, who kept calling people "racist monarchists" etc.? If so, he's been banned.

Posted by: Andrea Harris at June 9, 2004 at 08:17 PM

For the ultimate resource on bigotry, have a look at the Racial Slur Database.

Posted by: EvilPundit at June 9, 2004 at 08:57 PM

Andrea, he's probably referring to my ham-fisted attempts to debate said troll. Looking back at the thread, I realise I framed my argument poorly, but I still didn't say anything that deserved the slurs the idiot threw at me.

I shouldn't have let the bastard bait me into the stupid argument (which had nothing to do with tim's post).

Posted by: Quentin George at June 9, 2004 at 09:49 PM

As a regular (and I hope prolific) contributor to the ABC wordmap site -- and a vigorous defencer of Tim's column and views -- I find myself in a dilemma. (Problem with two equally unpleasant outcomes.) Put down the wordmap -- which I believe is a valid attempt at recording the language variations of Australia, no matter how "unpleasant" or "un-PC" they may be -- or put down Tim, whose writing I admire and with whose sentiments I (mostly) agree wholeheartedly?

I mean, we DO understand that the words are put there by contributors, not the ABC, don't we? And we DO understand that to pick and choose what's put there is censorship, don't we?

I'm sorry, but -- and this is probably the ONLY time you'll hear me say this -- I fully support the ABC in this instance. (And isn't it being done in conjunction with the Macquarie dictionary compilers?)

Posted by: BruceT at June 9, 2004 at 10:28 PM

Oh, BTW, at my daughter's 18th last weekend, they (the kids ... err, young adults) referred numerous times to "goon bags" -- these being a cask (or just the bladder therein) of wine; specifically in this case, their wine of choice -- Buronga Ridge fruity lexia. (Shudders -- sips glass of Vasse Felix semillon sauvignon blanc to get rid of imagined taste.)

Posted by: BruceT at June 9, 2004 at 10:32 PM

Goon...now that's a word I haven't used since university (Four years ago now).

Fruity Lexia, Passion Pop, and that disgusting red wine for which the name currently escapes me...

Posted by: Quentin George at June 9, 2004 at 10:38 PM

Jigaboo is like calling a black person a jungle bunny or spear chucker. In case you didn't know.

Posted by: Moonbat_One at June 9, 2004 at 10:48 PM

Here is the definition of "jigaboo" from hyperdictionary.com:

Definition: [n] (ethnic slur) offensive name for a Black person; "only a Black can call another Black a nigger"

Synonyms: coon, nigger, nigra, spade

See Also: Black, black person, blackamoor, boy, Negro, Negroid

Posted by: JohnO at June 9, 2004 at 10:59 PM


I mean, we DO understand that the words are put there by contributors, not the ABC, don't we? And we DO understand that to pick and choose what's put there is censorship, don't we?

From the ABC site:
Once you have completed and submitted the form below, your contribution will be forwarded to the Macquarie Dictionary lexicographers for assessment. If successful, your regionalism will be entered into the Word Map database within one week.

It appears that ABC made a conscious decision to allow the entry.

Posted by: david at June 9, 2004 at 11:28 PM

Putting those words in print is a big no-no here in the US. I guess they're trying to be 'kewl...'

As a child if my conservative mother heard me use either of those words, she would have boxed my ears. She did once and I got the lecture about racism and tolerance being about rudeness and kindness.

Posted by: Joe at June 9, 2004 at 11:52 PM

You'd almost be worth pursuing, Timmy, if your writings held any smattering of fact. You know,I know and anyone with a rational brain in their head knows that the 'jigaboo' I used wasn't the one you used, and I didn't use the one you say I did for the very reason that I knew you'd pick it up. I'm really quite surprised that you're not smart enough to realise that. 'Jigga-boo' is NOT the same, and does NOT have the same implications as you'd so dearly love to infer that it does. Not only are you disingenuous, you're clumsy to boot. Go on, back under your rock, there's a nice fellow.

Posted by: Niall at June 10, 2004 at 09:43 AM

David, I think if you reread that, you'll find it's the Macquarie Dictionary lexicographers who decide whether the word is "successful" or not, and thus to be entered in the database.

Posted by: BruceT at June 10, 2004 at 10:42 AM

Yeah, Niall, and using racial slurs against a Vietnamese man isn't really being racist because Asians are so much smarter than white people it's like they're oppressing us with their smartness! Well, you anyway.

Posted by: Andrea Harris at June 10, 2004 at 11:50 AM

This is cool. When you click on that link up here in the Northern Hemisphere, the right-hand menu you mention ends up on the left hand side!
Kinda like toilets flushing, eh?

Posted by: Diggs at June 10, 2004 at 12:07 PM

So Niall is saying "that depends on what your definition of jigga-boo is"?

Posted by: richard mcenroe at June 10, 2004 at 01:21 PM

'Chateau Collapsible' for cask wine.
Never heard of the Aboriginal Suitcase, however, I reckon it would be more durable than a plagon.

Quentin: Lambrusca?

Posted by: kae at June 10, 2004 at 02:38 PM

Awaiting your definition, Niall.

Diggs: the hemispheric dislocation issue has been resolved.

Posted by: tim at June 10, 2004 at 04:40 PM

kae: Lambrusca, yes, that's it.


Posted by: Quentin George at June 10, 2004 at 05:30 PM

>I used wasn't the one you used, and I didn't use the one you say I did for the very reason that I knew you'd pick it up.

Note: Here, Niall acknowledges that the only reason he doesn't throw racial slurs over his blog is that a right-wing blogger would mock him for it.

Posted by: John Nowak at June 11, 2004 at 01:11 AM

That strategy doesn't seem to work, John. Niall gets mocked anyway. Perhaps his racism shows without him using naughty words?

Posted by: The Real JeffS at June 11, 2004 at 05:44 AM