Superlinguo, “a blog about language and linguistics by Lauren Gawne,” is obvious LH material; recently it’s featured Linguistics Jobs: Interview with a Freelance Editor, Writer and Trainer (“After 30 years in the finance sector, Howard Walwyn has returned to his love of language”) and Contexts of Use of a Rotated Palms Gesture among Syuba (Kagate) Speakers in Nepal:

A popular expression in Nepal is a fatalistically resigned ke garne? ‘what to do?’ The government office is closed, ke garne? The bus is running late, ke garne? When people say this, they also bring their palms up and rotate them inwards, with their thumb and index finger extended and the other fingers bunched in.

(There’s a gif illustrating it.) I look forward to investigating further; thanks, Bathrobe!


  1. Eeeeeeh. The gif does not correspond to the description and I use sometimes the same gesture (shown in the gif) for a rhetorical question (with one hand, not both, and usually slower) never being even close to Nepal.

  2. These are the people behind the Lingthusiasm podcast. Introductory, but enthusiastic and infectious!

  3. ‘what to do?’

    Corresponds pretty closely to Hebrew ‘Ma la’asot?’, which also comes with an outward palms gesture and hunch of the shoulders. Seemed to find infinite uses on the Kibbutz where I was a mitnadev,

    Wouldn’t any fatalistic culture have similar?

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