I recommend you just spell C-H-I-P-S.
Note: It is common to drop the "S." For example you'll see
POTATO and then spell C-H-I-P to ask if you want some "potato chips."
based on concept of the right hand thumb representing a knife or peeler and
the left hand representing a potato. Make two quick downward and forward
movements as if you were slicing a potato to make chips. The thumb
scrapes along the back of the "palm-down" left fist.
See "CHIPS" -
When I was younger I used to
think that the "CHIPS" sign above was just a made up sign we used around the Vicars house,
otherwise known as a "home-sign." It was useful for one of our
daughters, Sarah, who doesn't have any joints in her fingers. (Sort of hard to
fingerspell words like "C-H-I-P-S" when you can't bend your fingers.)
It is fairly common for Deaf households
to come up with "home signs" to refer to things that may not have commonly
recognized signs outside of the home. (Note: I don't recommend Hearing
people "invent" signs because Hearing people who are not immersed in the
culture tend to create home-signs that conflict with existing
signs and/or are embarrassingly inappropriate. When in doubt whether a sign
is offensive or not -- ask a Deaf person.)
I originally posted the variation of the sign for CHIPS here
with an explanation that it was a "home-sign" so that people could appreciate the fact that this language came into
being as a direct result of people adapting to their circumstances. Back
then, (when I first posted it) I figured it would be unlikely
to see this sign done outside my home. I posted, "Who knows? Maybe it will catch on?"
Well it seems many others have also "came up with this sign" and/or it has
spread very quickly. See below.
-- Dr. Bill
In a message dated 10/26/2007
1:03:37 P.M. Pacific Daylight Time, mtew@ writes:
Just thought I would let you know, I was looking at the sign you said is a
home-sign for chips, however that is how my daughter learned it down here in
Florida. Maybe it has already started to catch on?? Thanks for all of your
Monica J. Tew
In a message dated 10/27/2007 11:00:23 A.M. Pacific Daylight Time,
Dr. Bill writes:
Thanks for mentioning that.
I think you are right. The use of this sign has spread far and wide.
I saw it the other day being used by a graduate of the California School for
the Deaf, Fremont.
But instead of using an "S" hand (fist) for the base hand, she was using an
index finger for the base hand and using the "C" hand as the moving,
dominant hand. I'll stick with the "S" and "C" variation for now, but
it is interesting to see how quickly language can evolve.
You can learn
American Sign Language (ASL) online at American Sign Language University ™
ASL resources by Lifeprint.com © Dr. William Vicars