The sign for "underwear" is made by using the index finger and thumb of
each hand to trace the outline of your underwear. Your palms face backward.
Your hand shape changes from an upside down "L" to a closed
STUDENT: I've seen some other sign for underwear up near the
mouth? Is that an okay sign?
Dr. Bill: Hey, I've seen that sign too. A bunch of my older friends
sign it that way. It looks sort of like a loose "C" hand that closes a
couple of times into an "S" hand at the chin.
I've never particularly liked that version, (to me doing the sign near the
mouth makes me think of the phrase "eat my shorts" -- which I've never done mind you) but I've noticed people get rather protective of their underwear so
if that is how most Deaf people do it in your area, by all
means when in Rome do as the Romans do! If they want to eat their
shorts, wear togas, and party all night long, then you have a cultural
responsibility to join in.
Underwear isn't just for the bottom half (unless perhaps you are in
France), so for all you gals out there we need a sign for the top. I prefer
to go with a classic beige underwire modified "L" handshape showing the
general area covered by a bra.
BRA or bikini:
p.s. To "Jack" in SF, "No, I will
not model this further. But thanks for asking
though and best wishes
for a delightful summer."
A student asks: "If you are sitting, how would you sign things like
pants and underwear above that region of the body?"
Dr. Bill answers: Just do such signs a little higher than normal.