Favorite Australian Slang: Bikies and Bikkies
This is part of an ongoing series of posts on my favorite Aussie slang. Be sure to check back for updates, or subscribe to my RSS feed to get updates to your reader automatically.
Whenever that time of the week arrives when I’m supposed to elaborate on some of those amazing bits of Aussie slang, I get all giggly inside because some words just sound so funny to me. A couple of the words I want to discuss today are spelled with only one letter difference, so I grouped them into this one post: bikies and bikkies.
Bikies are what Americans would call bikers. To be more specific, they are members of a motorcycle gang, perhaps wearing leather and riding a Harley. I don’t know about you, but the term “bikie” sounds a bit silly to me, but that probably has something to do with it just sounding “off” still. It’s the same reason why I get laughed at when I say aluminum instead of aluminium.
Now bikkies are a completely different thing actually being short for biscuits. And, if you happen to remember my menu items post from some months back, you will know that biscuits in Australia can actually be used to describe both sweet and savory treats: cookies and crackers. I know, it is quite confusing when the one word refers to such different food, so how do you differentiate?
A lot of times, differentiation comes from context. If you are having tea and bikkies, that probably means some sort of sweetened cookie or shortbread. If you’re having cheese and bikkies, then that is a cracker.
As an offshoot of the word bikkies, there is also the phrase of “it cost big bikkies”. You would use this when you want to explain something as being expensive.