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Study Finds Dragging Finger Across Throat Still Best Death Threat

DALLAS, TX — Crunching the final numbers after four years of fieldwork, researchers at Southern Methodist University concluded that dragging a finger across one's throat is still the best way to communicate the impending death of a nearby adversary.

“The data speaks for itself,” said the study’s lead researcher Dr. Gregory Robinson, “Whether performed by a schoolyard bully, mafia henchman, or a psychotic pickleballer, slowly dragging a lone finger across the throat outperformed all other indicators in its ability to communicate the lust for ending someone’s life.”

Participants in the study said that extending the pointer finger towards the temple and lowering the thumb as a trigger, then cocking one's head to the side, is “decent,” but could be misinterpreted. The gesture was noted to also be applicable in situations in which one hopes to indicate suicide from boredom or extreme embarrassment following a failed interaction with a crush. While merely cracking one's knuckles, participants agreed, “lacked a certain intentionality.”

Across all death indicators, however, researchers say the threat level increased fivefold when paired with what is known as “the crazy eyes.”

Robinson hopes the study will help those looking to communicate their desire to snuff out another’s life for a wrong committed against them in the most direct and effective way possible.


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Jamie Larson