Dirty Finger

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Tuesday, February 11, 2014

THE “dirty finger” is a form of sign language used in lieu of verbal communications. It expresses disgust and contempt of something or someone.

The “df” is a visual expletive which means “sonafabitch, sonamagun, sana mamatay ka.”

I am quite sure it was an American who invented the iconic tacky semaphore, but certainly it was a creative minded Pinoy who thought of naming his beloved, “Pining Garcia.”


The DF has put Representative Yeng Guiao in trouble. In fact, he was slapped a one-game suspension plus a P100,000 fine for flashing the universal handcrafted device to express extreme anger and condemnation of perceived foes.

Pampangos who personally know the former vice governor could hardly believe that Yeng was capable of using a dirty finger in public. He has not been known to lose control of himself even at the height of his bitter quarrel with then Gov. Eddie Panlilio. Now, with his experience and skill at dirty fingering, Rep. Guiao can file a bill decriminalizing the dirty finger act from the law on slander.

Newsmen like the highest paid poet Macky (who rues his loss of P500 after an event) said the hundred thousand peso-fine was only a drop in the millionaire-lawmaker’s bucket. Susmariosep! The amount is enough to trigger a low intensity conflict or a tribal war among ill-paid reporters.

Cong. Yeng should learn a lesson from former congressman Teddyboy Locsin (Makati) who had the notorious reputation of using the dirty finger once too often. As we know he lost his reelection bid.

If looks could kill, Coach Yeng’s indignant stance, his eyes like burning coal, plus the stiletto stab of the dirty finger, could have massacred the people at the PBA officiating table.

Probably had former congressmen Tarzan Lazatin and Blueboy Nepomuceno seen how furiously angry Yeng could get in a stiff contest, the two former city mayors may not think of running against Guiao in 20l6.

The dirty finger can be effectively pointed at one’s enemy or tormentor without being visible. It could be camouflaged within language or verbalized in rhetoric as what President Noy said of China’s leaders acting like Hitler when he annexed neighboring countries that led to WWII.

In berating and threatening to kill a suspect rice smuggling king, Davao City Mayor Duterte gave the outward equivalent of the dirty finger. He had the sense not to flash the sign in the Senate hearing to prevent scandalizing the old ladies and matrons including Justice Sec. De Lima et al.

Jeepney and bus drivers are the habitual practitioners of the dirty finger sign. Punks and gang members, even alcoholics who get ugly drunk in sidewalks have acquired the habit as a cuss act or protest.
When President Ramos, who insisted on leaving lahar-buried Pampanga to nature, visited the province in 1994 he passed by a crowd by a destroyed bridge. He automatically put his “Kaya Natin” finger sign (thumb’s up) to the throng. The lahar victims slyly responded with the dirty finger which the car riding president could hardly notice.

In this feverish prelude to Valentine’s Day, our youth will be observing the season of love with excess and reckless abandon. One favorite dating site is the movie house.

When my two daughters were in their teenage years, I would forbid them to go to movies on Valentine’s. Blame me for being paranoid but on a day dedicated to love, many people commit crazy things. The madness is covered up by a deluge of flowers and chocolates. Baby Ruth, KISSES, TOBLERONE, BUTTER FINGER, EVEN DIRTY FINGER.


May God’s love walk before you,
troubles stay away from you,
true friends stand beside you.
May God bless you today and always.

Published in the Sun.Star Pampanga newspaper on February 12, 2014.


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