Date: Fri, 3 Oct 1997 14:19:13 -0400 From: Robert Ness Subject: Re: pop one's fingers Some West Africans, Ghanaians especially, "pop their fingers," as it's called, by flipping or snapping the wrist so that the index finger "pops" sharply against the thumb and middle-finger. The gesture expresses surprise or amazement. I've not seen it done here, or even so referred to, but like West African tooth-sucking (expressive of contempt) it may have made it across the Atlantic into the south or the Caribbean. On Fri, 3 Oct 1997, Gregory {Greg} Downing wrote: > At 09:32 AM 10/3/97 -0600, you wrote: > >We didn't ask this question in the DARE questionnaire, but anecdotal > >evidence suggests that "to pop one's fingers," meaning 'to snap one's > >fingers' (i.e., sliding the middle finger quickly off the thumb onto the > >palm, making a snapping sound) is found chiefly in the South. Are some of > >you familiar with the term? When? Where? > > > >Thanks-- > > > >Joan > > > > "Finger Poppin" is an R&B song from the early to mid 60's credited to Ike > Turner. The thrust of the song is that the male singer used to worry about > what a female partner did, but doesn't care any more. In the version of the > song I've heard (which is not Turner's), the key line says something like > "finger poppin' on you" (note the construction of the object, which may or > may not be a common one). Turner was born in NW Mississippi in 1931. I've > never heard "to finger pop" other than in that song, but I've only lived in > the northeast and midwest of the US. > > Greg Downing/NYU, at greg.downing[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE] or downingg[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE] >