Many shows on Israeli TV feature a sign-language interpreter in the corner of the screen for the benefit of the Israeli hearing impaired. While there is nothing wrong with my hearing, from time to time I find myself watching the interpreter rather than the show. I know very little about sign language: I know it is different in each country – and I know how to sign ‘I love you’. That’s pretty much it, except I have noticed the interpreters spell the letters of certain names, but have specific signs for popular ones – so when I first noticed the sign-language lady on the nightly news making a comb-over gesture when the anchorman said ‘Ehud Olmert’, I was certain I was mistaken. Only after finding the following video on the Israeli sign language website SignPedia, did I begin to believe my own eyes:
Ehud Olmert, who has been in the public eye for years, has always had a comb-over in a futile effort to disguise his receding hairline. It has only been a couple of years since he stopped fooling himself and accepted his baldness, so I guess the gesture for his name was invented a long time ago, which is rather funny to watch now, because it seems like deaf people all over Israel are making fun of him.