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Picture of Kalleh
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In another thread I referred to a book I recently read by a Swedish author. Some of the words or phrases he used were not familiar to me. One of them is this:

Context: Ove (main character in my book) was in a bit of a tiff with another driver. The other man gave him the finger.

Response: "Ove responded to the gesture in the manner of all men of a certain age who've been properly raised: by slowly tapping the tip of his finger against the side of his head."

Have you heard of that before?
 
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Yes. In US terms it means, "think," or "mentality," but I suspect in Sweden it likely means the same as pointing to one's head and twirling one's index finger around, i.e. crazy.

It's been fifty years since I worked with a group of Swedes, but that's how I remember it.
 
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Interesing, Geoff. You may be right.
 
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It is used in German also. Mentally suspect is rather good. Crazy in German gesture if usually indicated by pointing the index finger at one's temple, and then flick it suddenly to point upwards, sometimes with a slight twirling motion. It used to be one of my favorites to perceive in the wild.

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Ceci n'est pas un seing.
 
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I remember from my Spanish classes that in Mexico touching your elbow means "stupid" (that is if my memory is correct).
 
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