Why couldn't he just say that the guy turned to look at the man and waved?
It reminds me of another writer -- not one of my favorite novelists -- who once said that a man shook his head, indicating that he agreed. Shaking your head means no; nodding means yes. There's no other way around it. You can't shake your head yes or nod no.
My worst fear as a writer is that I'll do something bonehead, and it'll get through editing.
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