Macquarie Dictionary


Off for an al desko

The clock ticks slowly towards lunchtime. Your stomach rumbles, you can’t wait to get stuck into last night’s leftovers, but your workload seems to be growing. You might need to tell your work buddies that you will be eating lunch al desko. Al desko is a nice piece of Aussie slang that riffs on the term alfresco, meaning ‘in the open air’ and commonly used in reference to dining.

The al desko has become so commonplace that people are questioning the etiquette of eating at your desk

Offices are full of slang and jargon, some of which jars and some of which is so commonplace we hardly notice anymore. One example is touch base, meaning to make contact with someone. You likely find yourself typing this in your emails as a kind of introduction or tentative hello. 

Get all your ducks in a row is another example of workplace jargon. Unfortunately, this does not mean to go and visit your local pond to feed the ducks but is in fact a colloquial way of saying you are going to get organised. 

Comment below if you have any other office slang we haven’t heard before. Now, I’m off for an al desko

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.

Leave a Comment

Featured Articles