What handshake should you use?
Are you related?
Like share the bathroom related?
- Yes. Do whatever brings you the most familial based joy.
Distant relatives? Do you like them?
- No. Distant relatives? Do you like them?
- Yes. A huge should do the trick.
- No? Tell them you have to go to the bathroom and then never come back. If they ask for a huge just start rubbing your stomach and shaking your head. If they persist, mumble the words 'explosive diarrhea' and 'mess in the bathroom'.
Are you a germaphobe?
Be like Howie Mandel and do the fist bump. But please, don't grow a soul patch, unless you're joining a Smashmouth cover band.
Are you traveling?
Are you in Quebec?
- Yes. Time to experience the wonderfully confusing world of the double kiss (always start on the right).
- No. Are you time traveling?
- Yes. To the 1920's?
- Yes. Tip of the hat for the sirs and a curtsey for the ladies. Unless you're a flapper, in which case screw the societal conventions.
- No. Before modern civilization?
- Yes. Hey, you get to make the rules.
- No. Do not tear a hole in the space time continuum. Observe first, and then please adapt to their greeting.
Are you just reading this to discover some new ways to greet your friends, family & colleagues?
Yes. I like the cut of your jib. How about a bunch of bonus handshakes?
- If you find yourself among the Maori in New Zealand, the formal greeting is called a Hongi, where you press your nose and forehead together with another person.
- To show deep respect or admiration, go with the kowtow, where you kneel and bow as low that your head nearly touches the ground.
- If you're by chance a sophisticated canine, first of all, congrats on making it this far. Second, you already know that you're committed to a life of greeting other dogs with a sniff of their ass, and giving your own a pay in exchange for some measly, dried up old dog bone. Now who's a good boy?!
Are you making a first impression?
Yes. Is it a friend of a friend?
- Yes. Use your brain. What's the norm in your group? Do that.
- No. Is it a potential love interest?
- Yes. Keep it classy with an old-fashioned handshake to start. Or go for it. Try ending with a cheek kiss. OoOOoo you fancy huh?
- No. Are you a celebrity?
- Yes. Is it Matt Damon? Tell him you loved him in the Funky Bunch, shake his hand, and walk away.
- No. Is it someone you admire?
- Yes. Take a deep breath. Then take another. If they haven't been ushered away yet, stick out your hand and try your damnedest to tell them it's a pleasure to meet them.
- No. Is it somebody you think is a waste of precious TMZ airtime?
- Yes. Ask them to take a selfie with you. Even if you don't like them, you'll get a couple dozen 'likes' on Instagram, and that's always good for an ego boost.
- No. Is this celebrity person attractive to you?
- Yes. Shake their hand and never break eye contact. Tell them that you dream of them, and you're destined to be together. Be the fan that gets remembered. They love that.
- No. Are you an introvert?
- Yes. Wait for clues as to what the other person will do and then copy them. Bonus: This works for pretty much every social situation.
- No. Please do introverts a solid and stick with the old-fashioned handshake or friendly wave.
Are you playing sports? (Yes, curling counts)
- Yes. Did you just score a point/touchdown/goal/other thing?
- Yes. This calls for the classic, trusted, tried and true pat on the ass.
- No. Did you win the game/round/sports?
- Yes. Time to celebrate with a high five, and if you're talented, double up with the pat on the ass on your downswing.
- No. Did you just win or complete a race?
- Yes. High five any and all strangers that are nearby.
- No. Did you do something good but not great?
- Yes. Fist bump.
Do you work together?
- Yes. Looking for a career change? Want to maintain some dignity?
- Yes. The standard old fashioned handshake will do just fine.
- No. Leave 'em hanging.
Are you friends?
- Yes. Like best friends?
- Yes. Secret handshake. If you don't have one, this should be your first order of business.
- No. Good pals?
- Hugs. Hugs. Hugs for everyone.
- No. Friends with benefits?
- Yes. Give a kiss on the cheek.
- No. Some dude from high school?
- Yes. This is why facebook exists. But if you must greet them, a nice shoulder pat would do.
- No. Are you enemies?
- Yes. Go for the crusher.
- No. Are you two awkward people?
- Yes. Maintain the maximum personal bubble space allowed by law and say 'hi'.