Goose/The Finger

Donald M Lance lancedm at MISSOURI.EDU
Wed Jan 23 05:34:51 UTC 2002

When I was in elementary and junior high school in South Texas in the 1940s,
Chicano boys had their way of forming the hand and gesturing with the middle
finger.  They also would give a double insult by curling the index and
little fingers and jabbing the middle and ring fingers toward the insultee.
Using both hands made it even stronger.  The verbal accompaniment would
hardly have been considered a salute.  What gringos and yankees do these
days is puny compared with "the olden days."  And 'pájaro' (bird) would
never have come up unless there were some side reference to a zopilote
(buzzard) eating the remains of the person who had been chingado.

> From: Tom Kysilko <pds at VISI.COM>
> Reply-To: American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Date: Tue, 22 Jan 2002 22:47:24 -0600
> Subject: Re: Goose/The Finger
> At 11:10 AM 1/22/2002 EST, James A. Landau wrote:
>> Then there is the phrase "three-finger salute" meaning to use the CTL-ALT-DEL
>> keys to reboot a PC.  One strongly suspects this is derived from the middle
>> finger salute.
> I first encountered "three-finger(ed) salute" in the Boy Scouts, and
> "two-finger(ed) salute" in Cub Scouts.  Goes back way before my time.
> Tom Kysilko        Practical Data Services
> pds at       Saint Paul MN USA

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