Macquarie Dictionary


Are you as bald as a bandicoot?

Anyone conscious of their receding hairline might want to snap on a cap because this week’s word of the week is as bald as a bandicoot. To be bald as a bandicoot means to be totally bald. This is a bit of a weird phrase given that bandicoots, small marsupials, are manifestly furry, not bald. 

Bandicoots are the inspiration for several metaphors that still survive in places where the animal does not. As miserable as a bandicoot on a burnt ridge means you feel totally and utterly miserable. While barmy as a bandicoot means you’re crazy: hopping mad. 

Let’s leave off the bandicoots for now and look at some other words for bald. Are you follicularly challenged, that is, losing your hair? Perhaps you like to dye your hair eggshell blonde or like to keep your chrome dome nice and shiny. Is your mate a mudguard? That’s a nickname for a bald bloke who is a bit stupid, wait for it, because he’s shiny on top and shit underneath. Oft!

Each week, we have a look at a slang word from Australian English. You can see other Aussie Word of the Week posts from the Macquarie Dictionary here.

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