long pinky fingernails on men

Does anyone know why many men (mostly European) keep their pinky fingernails long? I thought it was originally for drugs then I noticed it on painters that I know do not do drugs. I also know a retired priest that does this. So what the heck??

Booger pickers.

How do you know they don’t do drugs?

Some men use them for opening cigarette packs.

Good one :).

I know they don’t do drugs because they are close relatives. Besides it’s not that hard to know if someone does drugs.

European? You sure?

I’ve lived in Europe all my life, and I’ve never seen it here.

I have seen it in Iran, though. I assumed it was supposed to show that one was too rich and/or well-connected to have to do any manual labor, but the locals assured me it was a musicians’ thing - presumably to be able to use the long nail as a pick when playing some Persian string instrument (?).

I say European but I’m not sure it is done in Europe. I’m referring mostly to Greek men in the U.S. Your explanations for it are very interesting. Thanks

If they’re such close relatives, why not ask them?

Thought about that but I think it would be too embarrassing.

It’s actually pretty hard to know. If you’re not with them and watching them 24/7, in fact you can’t know. Contrary to depictions you may have seen in the media, ingesting drugs (even repeatedly) does not automatically turn someone into a candidate for playing an extra on The Walking Dead. Most drug users look just like you and me. They walk among us, and live totally normal lives.

I have a friend who lets the nail on his little finger grow long. He is an artist. When he makes a mistake, he uses the nail to scrape off the paint before it dries. It is faster and easier than reaching for a knife.

We had a kid in junior high in the sixties who kept one pinky nail at least an inch or more long. He was “the odd one”, or, at least one of the odder ones. Quiet, kind of creepy, stayed to himself. You know the kind. “He was a loner, officer, very quiet and strange.” :eek: Possibly just a very effete, artistic statement. We might have thought he was gay, but I don’t think most of us could really think that through in those days.

Back in the early 70’s, I encountered two men with very long pinky nails: one was a family counselor who had come to talk to our high school psychology class; the other was a waiter in a Mexican restaurant. I was dying of curiosity, but didn’t have the nerve to ask either of them about it.

I asked a guy I knew about it. He claimed it was drug related. He could have been spouting BS.

Wasn’t it for snuff/tobacco/nose candy?

I used to keep one index fingernail long-ish (like 3-4 mm beyond the quick) to open letters, packages and things like that.

So he doesn’t have to bring a gun.

Wow. That must be a Hell of a long beach to need a garden spade for.

I started growing my pinky fingernails long several years back, for no particular reason than to see how long they would get. One time the right one grew so long that it came past the height of my middle finger. They usually top out at a little over an inch, though.
So in my case, it was simple curiosity.

[ Also, I concocted a villain at my Deviant Art page called “The Dastardly Disruptor”, who has the ability to shoot weird eldritch energy out of his elongated pinky fingernails. ]

I know my dad keeps it to pick his nose. :eek: