As of writing, my most recent status update on Facebook is;

three way handshakes make me cry

This is a reference to the three way handshake in terms of TCP, the method that two computers use to predetermine the parameters of a network connection before attempting to communicate. I was reading something about it that I didn’t understand entirely. I read the same paragraph over and over again, maybe seven or eight times, and it was failing to sink into my head. So, I decided to broadcast my annoyance with this paragraph via my Facebook status update thing.

Half an hour later and a friend of mine read my comment and left me a message talking about physical handshakes, discussing them in their various forms and styles. After I told him that I wasn’t really talking about actual handshakes i started thinking about them and how ridiculous they are.

Here’s my reply to my friend’s handshake musings;

I often don’t know what kind of a handshake I should be giving. Like you said, a firm handshake denotes an egotistical streak whereas a limp handshake (or a wristflop as I like to call it) is a sign of weakness. Personally I don’t tend to judge someone based on their handshake. I can usually tell what someone is like by their presentation as a whole and the way they greet me.

But this puts me in an awkward position in which I don’t quite know the point at which a handshake becomes too firm or too limp. I don’t want to portray myself as an egotistical arse, nor do I want to appear timid. Quietly confident is what I’m looking for.

Also, how many times do you shake? Do you go up and then down? Once? Twice? I’ve even had some people shake my hand in a kind of circular motion; moving their hand up and away from themselves and then down and back again. It was bizarre and unsettling.

Some people tend to just grab and squeeze; a handshake I am loathed to participate in. Grab and squeeze my hand and I will tear into you at each and every opportunity. Make an idiot comment, try to impress everyone else or laugh too loud and I’ll point out your errors and make you look like an idiot because you deserve to be knocked down a few pegs because your handshake told me instantly that you’re an utter cunt.

The handshake is just one of the millions of cultural formalities that fills me with fear and trepidation. I wish it didn’t exist. A simple, polite “hello” should be sufficient enough, but apparently it isn’t. People feel the need to grab hold of my appendages and squeeze until my knuckles crack.

People are silly.

Damn, that’s a long reply for Facebook.

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