07 February 2008
Supporters of Samak Sundaravej, Thailand's new prime minister, have complained that complaining television signers for the deaf hold on to their noses as a shorthand reference for the short-tempered political veteran. Samak's nose has long been a target for cartoonists, and the National Association for the Deaf in Thailand said sign language translators had been using the shorthand for more than a decade without complaint. But with the new parliamentary session televised this week, supporters among Samak's ruling People Power party noticed the reference and complained. "It is not meant as a nose joke," said one signer. "We have touched our noses for years to refer to Samak, but people noticed this time because we had to repeat the movement over 300 times."