Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Hand Gestures


My favorite lesson this year was teaching about hand gestures in America vs Japan. 

USA's "come" gesture:

Japan's gesture for "come" is similar to go away in English.

The first time I was beckoned in Japan, I thought the shop keeper was telling me, "No foreigners allowed." Turns out she was welcoming me in.

Gestures get weirder.

This is the sign for money in Japanese:


This is the sign for asshole in American sign language, which is well-known thanks to the film Mr. Holland's Opus:

Okay is also the hand gesture for money in Japan.

No one asked me what it meant in English. 

I just explained it was a bad word and that was enough for them. The culture here isn't that curious.

You of course know this sign:

Turn it around:

In many parts of the world, that means:

And finally, I noticed that in Japan if you move your hand while doing the sign for "a little," it means no thanks:

What's your most commonly used hand gesture?

Remember to remember . . .