long pinkie finger nail

Penn of Penn & Teller does this. I have also seen this occasionally in movies, usually on a mobster or some such other mysterious imposing character. I am referring to the one long, beautifully manicured and painted pinkie fingernail. What the hell is that? What does it mean? This question has plagued me for ages. Any help at all would be much appreciated. Thanks,

Easier to scoop and snort coke

Welcome aboard(s), kyuro!

Being a fingerpick guitarist, I grow the nails of my right hand rather long. Even though I do not play using my right hand’s little finger, I grow the nail long to match the others. It has proven extremely useful (and saved many a trip to the tool box) when I need to position or pry loose an analytical sample or silicon wafer that might be contaminated by contact with human fingertips.

Years ago it was a coke scoop. Hard to say what it means these days. I remember when a guy had his right ear pierced it meant he was cool (a doper, or social renegade), his left ear pierced meant he was gay. Then it went to both ears had to be pierced to be cool. Who knows what things mean today, I don’t keep up with the underworld fashions anymore.

I’ve never met anyone with one of those who didn’t cultivate it to facilitate the insufflation of various unprescribed examples of the apothecary arts.

That is backwards. Left = Straight, Right = Gay. Both = Gay. Now it is both, or just left, multiple on each or one ear for both straight and gay…However I have never met anyone who just has the right ear pierced that was straight.

The Coke Nail is a fasion statement

In China, it means that you are not part of the working class, that you are part of the “white collar” work industry.

It’s always the pinky, too, even though it used to be all of them.

My girlfriend told me that, just to give credit.

I knew a guy from Korea who kept his nail of his pinky finger long and he gave a similar explanation to Mahaloth.

I went out with a guy once, and one evening I noticed that he had a long pinkie nail. I put that together with the fact that he’d disappear to the bathroom and come back feeling very refreshed and energetic, and that he had quite a bit of money, and deduced that he was doing coke. Being in recovery, I asked him point blank if he was doing coke, which he denied. I forget how he explained it. And no, he didn’t play the guitar.

My boring old ex father-in-law used his to pick his nose. He didn’t even drink alcohol, much less use coke.
He was of the lower classes. :slight_smile:
BTW; at one time, cool gay guys would swish over and offer you a “nail”.

This will be gross, but…I used to have a friend (male) who kept one pinkie nail long. He wasn’t a druggie, but had a deviated septum and terrible problems…er…“snot-wise.” He used the nail to pick the crusted nasal secretions out.

I kid you not…told you it was gross.

As a child I read a book called “Meet the Werewolf,” which claimed that a long “pinkie” nail meant witchcraft was afoot.

Elaborating on the “working class” hypothesis. Long ago, the working class (who worked using their hand in handicraft and all) couldn’t grow long nails because they broke in the labour. So the “upper” class kept long nails to show that they are not part of the “working” class. I heard this story from a Malaysian friend.

Never to be Queen, you might have something with the witchcraft theory.

I have seen a few people in Japan with long little finger nails, and have been told by an older Japanese friend that they are “making a spell” or “entering into a pact” with some dark force. Her English was non-existent and my Japanese doesn’t stretch to such fine nuances as she was trying to tell me about. Sounded creepy anyway.

the pasar malam chinese fortune telling uncle says your pinkie shouldn’t be shorter than the last joint of your wedding finger, for otherwise you might tend to be unsuccessful in money matters. which is why some people keep a long pinkie finger nail…

Additionally, it’s easy to keep a long pinkie nail because they don’t get banged up as much. My hands are always a mess. If I ever have a nail, it’s always a pinkie nail.

I sometimes let my pinkie finger nail grow longer than the others. I have no idea why–it is just something that I do sometimes! I had no idea there were so many possible uses or reasons for a long pinkie nail! Has any one else on the board let them grow for no obvious reason, or am I just odd and curious? (I am willing to accept that possibility!)

Hokkaido Brit, that is interesting. I did several searches on this, though I couldn’t find anything new beyond the fact that werewolves and vampires are linked with long nails in many cultures.