Sunday, November 6, 2016

100 words in sign

This is Bill Vicars who runs the website, one of the first ASL dictionaries online. I use it all the time to check things and to compare. It is an excellent source. This is the first time I've seen him in a regular YouTube video. It's very nice.

Let's take a break from polly ticks for a moment and learn 100 basic signs.

Come on! Be a sport. They're all very easy. And once seen, unforgettable.

Man, does this take me back. Time warp. doodly doodly dooly do, voop, there I am. Back in High School. I told my parents I wanted to take a class at Denver University but I hadn't even taken the SAT yet. D.U. would allow me to attend their class if I paid the tuition but it wouldn't be counted for credit on any transcript since I hadn't officially enrolled. And I'd have to be quiet and behave. I felt displaced at first. I was so small compared to everyone else. The guys had beards. Everybody was so muh-chur.

They were actually exactly my type and I fit right in. They were very curious about this little punk in their class.

The textbook they used was a dopy little thing with very poor illustrations and only two signs per page. It did take some figuring out what the simplistic drawings were trying to convey. Nevertheless I read the whole thing in one night and I couldn't believe how achingly slowly the college kids took it all up. The whole class really was very slow on the uptake. They took months to work through the book. But they had other college classes and I had only High School classes to deal with. I couldn't even drive. I'd take the bus to D.U. then the bus to where Mum played bingo that night and she drove me the rest of the way home. 

And I already knew the alphabet from way before that. I was between kindergarten and first grade and Barry and I were waiting in the car in tiny town in Pennsylvania when Mum came out of a store and handed us a card with the alphabet drawn on it. Twenty-six little hand configurations. She said a guy gave her the card in exchange for a donation and that the guy couldn't hear. Both Barry and I were dumbfounded, we went, "What, what? No wait. What!? Can't hear?" We couldn't even imagine such an affliction. What a bummer! So we learned the configurations right there in the car and had our own little secret language thereafter. 

That was fun. And that's why last week I bought my nephew this book. It has the alphabet with words associated with each letter and adorable children's illustrations. I figure he and his brother can do the same thing. Possibly. Maybe. Perhaps. Who knows? Here is a woman reviewing the book. She gets a real kick out of it even though it's written for little children. Comments to the video are all positive. 

But I didn't want the other brother to feel left out so I bought him a different book. A coloring book that is color filled on translucent pages to be held up as stained glass windows. The pictures are all ancient Egyptian topics. Plus a set of color markers. Tricky, eh? I'm inflicting my own interests upon the two boys. To see if they take hold. It could happen. But I'm not actually counting on it. It's just an experiment. You know how their little minds are wide open to everything when they're that young. We must strike before their minds close.

I just now noticed their sign for "pizza." We do the number 2, two fingers inscribe in the air a double "Z " with one Z motion. Two Z's with one movement. It's clever by focusing on the double Z in the middle of "pizza," while the children's book mentioned above has the word under "P" for "pizza" that does the same thing, uses a "P" (that causes 2 fingers to stick out held downward) to inscribe a single "Z" in the air. But since two fingers are doing the motion it turns out a double "Z." The same two fingers, except configured as a "P." Very clever sign, and when you see it done, you sort of actually see a slice of pizza. It's weird.


deborah said...

very cool, but i only watched the first four minutes..they were going too fast....soooo sign would be a good thing for an aging mind to try and learn.

AllenS said...

There was no sound on the video.

Chip Ahoy said...

They repeat. And you can control speed by stopping it, and by settings.

Also, everything makes sense. For example female signs, girl, mother, aunt, grandmother are all at the lower part of the face, and male are upper part of the face.

"Aunt" is made with an "A" hand configuration at lower cheek, "uncle" is made with a "U," upper cheek.

"Boy" shows the bill of a boy's baseball cap, (nowadays worn backwards, and by men, but, eh, that was the original idea) It's the bill pulled forward, as if straightening the hat or shaping the bill.

COME ON! Be a sport.

Chip Ahoy said...

No sound. That's okay. The words are appearing on screen. Dr. Vicars is controlling it with his laptop. Each section he goes back and reviews.

Did you notice how "marriage," is clamping the hands, as in being united, and so is "hamburger," as forming a hamburger patty?

That means conceptually, being married is the exact same idea as forming a hamburger. Ha ha ha. No seriously, we do "hamburger" as if you're holding one to your mouth. While he does "pizza" as if he is holding a pizza slice to his mouth." These variations are a little bit weird, huh? But that's the way it is. Just like English, different ways to say the same thing.

deborah said...

how do you slow the vid?