Something odd seems to have happened! No so long ago when I used to see my friends across a bar, or in the street, our standard mode of greeting was something akin to a swift 2 finger (1 if we were feeling lazy) salute, perhaps coupled with a “Hey yup, you tosser!” or other such similar pleasantries. Nowadays it’s all handshakes from guys and cheek kissing from the lasses.
Now… over here, I can pretty much understand the kissing thing from girls. It’s a cultural thing in much the same way as the french do it, but the whole hand shaking thing is beyond me. We’re not having a business meeting from which we’ve manage to forge some magnificent agreement! We’re not negotiating the rights to out daughters maidenhead! (Apologies… still o.d.ing on The Tudors from yesterday… just be glad I never said “Neden”.) We’re likely as not bumping into each other in the pub… same as we did the other day… oh and t’other day before that.
Which is why… I just don’t get it. In actual fact, the general rule of thumb was… the better you knew the person, the worse the name / gesture was which was used as the greeting. There was no namby pamby hand hugging rigmarole, just an already existing mutual respect, from which a serious lack of touching would ensue, perhaps up until one of you needed to support the other in order to get home.
I should hasten to add that, as far of I am aware, none of my current crop of male miladdo’s I call my friends are Free Masons either. Their handshakes vary from hand shattering to as flaccid as a catholic priest in an all
boys girls school, but are never suspicious enough for me to be considering baring my nipple and knee and giving that knowing look that might get me into a golf club for free.
So…. what can possibly have started this, an uncalled for habit, which has now seemingly overtaken the most innocent of races, the casual drinker, and forced them into an almost unthinking thrusting out of the hand expectantly when making their salutation of welcome? Allow me to speculate…
Big Pharma companies!
Yes, you read that correctly. In the light of people waking up to the idea that we don’t actually need vaccines to avoid flu/various other ailments.. I am certain sure that profits, (which are the priority to Big Pharma, not health issues), are dipping.
So… what to do to make illnesses spread? Hmmm! I know… most germs are spread from contact, person to person. If we manage to instigate more touching, then the knock on effect has to be, more sick people! And what do sick people make? “Profits”, I hear you all yell, in true pantomime style!
So there you have it. This distasteful pernicious finger fondling is in fact, a huge cunning plan by “The Man” to rob you of your money, and create sickness within your group of friends. All under the despicable guise of supposedly cementing friendships via the medium of physical touching. Truly a trojan horse! And you’ve all been duped!
So.. consider this.. next time you find your hand drifting horizontally towards your friend. Do you really wish to be the one to be passing on this action? Re-enforcing the vicious (and if you’ve recently sneezed, quite possibly viscous) circle perpetuated purely and simply for the good of others and the downfall of yourself and those around you. Or, would you rather, upon realisation of what you are about to do, convert such a movement to an up and down motion, wink knowingly, and greet your friend with a chuckle which transcends the need for needless formality?
It’s not really much of a choice…. more a public service!