Go ahead. Give ’em the finger!

Posted: July 30, 2015 in Memories, Miscellaneous
Tags: , , , ,

In the rural areas of at least some of the US, giving someone the finger is quite different from what we normally think of when hearing that phrase.  While Bill and Chris were biking the Katy Trail in Missouri, I spend some of my time on the winding, unexpectedly hilly roads of the verdant country.  There, as in rural Nebraska where my grandparents had their farm, or along country roads in South Dakota, Wyoming, and other states, when you meet another driver, you simply raise the index finger of the hand at the top of the steering wheel in hello/acknowledgment of another person alive and well and driving in the country.

This casual greeting brings back good memories for me and a feeling of kinship with the person or people in the other vehicle.  So go ahead.  When appropriate, give ’em the finger.  Just be sure it’s the correct one.

  1. … oh that’s good to know ….I will use the index finger now to greet people instead the other one… and it’s cheaper, to use the long finger is 40 euros :o(

  2. The roadways might be a little more relaxed, if we moved to waving with the index finger. :-0

  3. julieallyn says:

    The old farmer salute! Born and raised in rural northern Iowa, I am all too familiar with this particular greeting!!

  4. Norma says:

    Like that “be sure it’s the correct one.” 😉

  5. bythebriny says:

    Ha! Here everyone just raises a hand, like a half-wave.

  6. Hi Janet. You have just given me idea for my next post. Will credit you of course. More anon! MB

  7. We do this on the roads around the farm. My Baltimore City husband has even picked up the habit. It’s what country folk do!

  8. Su Leslie says:

    It’s about the orientation of the hand. Palm inwards is a greeting; palm outwards not so much. Or that’s how it seems to work here.

  9. […] called This, That & The Other Thing. Author Janet posted a short account earlier today called Go Ahead, Give ’em The Finger and it got MB to […]

  10. Us bikers also do that…. Randy

  11. Suzanne says:

    They do in parts of the Australia. Old farmers on dirt roads do it. Your post makes me want to drive such windy tracks.

  12. There is an island near us that is famous for the one fingered wave too. It’s all so friendly with the one index finger saluting drivers, walkers and cyclists. :).

  13. Marie says:

    Grew up in northwestern Minnesota. They do it there too.:)

  14. Heyjude says:

    We do this her in the UK too when giving way to someone – just good manners to acknowledge courtesy on the road.

  15. I have done that before here in Indiana. If you are very obvious about which finger, you can do it.