Yank - Australians refer to all Americans as Yanks. Believe me, when I am directly referred to as a Yank, they are corrected. Politely. Because I'm from the South, and we have manners and such.
"The shits" - in Aussie speak, this means to be annoyed, aggravated, or angry at someone. The first time I heard it this guy was telling me about an argument he was getting into with a co-worker and how he got "the shits". I was trying to figure out how a person could give you diarrhea just by being annoying.
Rubber = eraser - I can never get used to my 7 year old step-son sitting at the table, doing his homework, and asking me for a rubber.
Coriander - The first time I went to buy cilantro, I walked up to the herbs and didn't see it. I thought to myself "this stuff labeled coriander sure looks like cilantro, it smells like cilantro, let me taste...yep, tastes like cilantro too." I figured this out all by my little lonesome.
Root - To root for something in America means to support, to cheer for, to want something good to happen (like for your favorite team to win); In Australia, to root means to f*ck.
Biscuit - in Australia, this is sorta kinda a general term for cookie or cracker; a good ol' fashioned American buttermilk biscuit is one of the most difficult food items to explain to Australians when they have no point of reference.
Pudding - in Australia, it means cake (again, sorta kinda); American pudding is sorta kinda like a custard - but neither is truly exactly like the other. Confused, yet?
Dummy = pacifier; in America, it's a nicer way to say idiot. A parent of a baby asking me to hand her the dummy and pointing at her child in the stroller (pram, in Australian)...because child had dummy/pacifier in mouth...well, I didn't know if she was calling her child an idiot, or what. But, I'm sure the look on my face showed confusion.
Rubbish bin = Trash Can; After living here six plus years, I get these words jumbled. Sometimes, I've been known to say trash bin and rubbish can. People listening to me just need to go with it.
Thongs* = flip flops; you can imagine how this could cause some confusion.
*No gif attached because silly me googled "thongs gif", and I saw way too many ass pictures to focus on trying again.
This list could continue on and on and on and on... I still have some word or phrase that I encounter, and I'm like...huh???
Thanks again to Kristen and Olya for this great idea of a post!