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How To “Flip The Bird” Around The World

Recent studies show that if you give someone or something the middle finger more than one time per day, you should get help for anger management. Anger classes can be very helpful when it comes to calming down your inner frustration and making you a much more calm person. However, sometimes human beings just need to let their anger up. We all have the habit of bottling up our emotions, which creates unneeded stress in our lives. Eventually we just blow out it at once which usually hurts those who happen to be in the line of fire. So although the study connected the dots between “flipping the bird” and anger management, perhaps it is just enough of an expression to keep us from really blowing up. So instead of getting help for anger, let’s hop in our imaginary jet and take a trip around the world to find out how people “flip the bird” in other cultures.

“Bras d’honneur”

This super-sized version of the finger originated somewhere in Central Europe, but most cultures have adopted their own versions. For this one, simply bend your arm into an L-shape while the other hand slaps the inside of your bent arm’s elbow.


“The V Sign”

This two-finger salute is of British origin and it performed by flicking the V sign with your index finger and middle finger. Make sure your palm is facing you and not outward.



To do the Moutza, thrust your hand toward the person you’re insulting with the palm facing down and and fingers outstretched. Traditionally an insult from Greece, it’s literal meaning is something along the lines of “I throw poop in your face.”


“Show Your Sole”

In the Arab world, as well as many Asian cultures, it is insulting to show the soles of your feet. They’re seen as the dirtiest part of your body and showing them to someone insinuates that you think they are filth… much like the dirt on your feet.



While it is most common in India and Pakistan, but you can this rude gesture too. Take your thumbnail, rest it behind your front two teeth and then flick towards the person you are insulting. The rough translation for this is, “Screw you and your family.”

“The Fangul”

The word ‘Fangul’ isn’t Italian, but its origins lie in the Italian word “Vaffanculo,” which means, “Go f#%$ yourself.” The gesture gained popularity in Italian-American culture as an insult, but in Italian culture, depending how you do it, there subtle differences in the meaning.


“The Mano Fico”

Doing this gesture in India, Turkey, Korea, Japan or Italy would be a bad idea. Also name the Fig, it was once a gesture of good luck but was eventually warped into a “screw you.” To do it, simply make a fist and stick your thumb between the index and middle finger.


“You’ve Been Cuckolded”

Common in Italy, this is performed by sticking up the index and pinky fingers while holding the others down with the thumb, swiveling the wrist back and forth. Shown to a man, by a woman, it implies that the recipient has been “cuckolded” – AKA cheated on. Shown man-t0-man, it means far worse.

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