Hang loose is a phase with multiple definitions, the first meaning is like the Shaka sign, which is a hand gesture of friendly intent that is used in a few places but commonly in Hawaii and in the surfing culture (in some places around the world this gesture means call me).
The second meaning is a slang expression, that means stand by and take it easy while you let it dangle loose, referring to the position of one’s testicles.
The two meanings don’t resemble any kind of similarity as it was shown.
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The Shaka sign used with the meaning Hang loose has first surfaced in Hawaii in the 1900s, but the exact origins are still unclear.
The hand sign is used by the Hawaiian which has led to even the surfing communities to pick up on the use of it.
The other meaning comes from southern Louisiana as a slang word; however the origins are unknown.
Spread and Usage
Hang loose is used in Hawaii daily basis and same with the surfing communities.
Also, since emojis were introduced on mobile phones, there is a Shaka emoji, which has made the term and the sign very popular nowadays.
You can find the sign all over social media sites, like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
- Mashable – The hang loose emoji is everywhere thanks to the existential dread that is 2018
- Boarders – The Shaka- History of the Hawaiian “Hang Loose”
- What The Emoji – 🤙 Call Me Hand