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ASL: "shade"

An ASL Hero writes:
"I really have trouble with how to sign 'shade.'  I suppose if I explain enough, people figure out what I'm trying to say--but it seems like there should be a more efficient way of signing 'shade' than showing the sun shining on a tree and the dark area on the other side!?"

Hello ASL Hero!
Oh sure, if the person to whom we are signing has recently arrived from some other planet and is just now figuring out how physics and things work here on Earth you might need to go into detail regarding the meaning of shade and tell your epic tale about the shining sun, trees, and darkness.
In regular conversation though we (Deaf) earthlings just sign DARK while mouthing "shade."

By way of comparison, in English you can't walk up to someone and out of the blue say the word "shade" without them wondering what you are talking about (or if you are, perhaps, an alien). For example, at first I thought you in your question were referring to "shades of nuance," and then I wondered if you were talking about "casting shade" (negativity) and then I realized you were taking about the regular old "common" meaning of shade when you got to mentioning "sun" and "dark areas" (in your English-text based post).

My point is that signing the concept of "shade" is not hard at all "in real life." Context makes it obvious what you are talking about.  Signing "shade" is only awkward when (without context) you just ask someone: Hey, how do you sign shade?

- Dr. Bill


DARK / shade:




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