August 13, 2009

Bonerkiller: Guys with Limp Handshakes

You’re a tall, strapping lad with a baritone that rivals Barry White’s. So please tell me that the appendage you just extended to me was a cold piece of flounder you had in your pocket and not your hand because really, from where I'm standing, there isn't a discernible difference between the two. In case you couldn't tell by my wincing, I hate your handshake. It was just a mess from the start to the awkward, clammy finish.

There’s no way a man’s man like you could command a grip so lifeless; it makes mine feel like the Incredible Hulk’s in comparison. Your weak handshake shows a lack of assertiveness on your part. I mean, would you shake the President’s hand that way? It's like I'm meeting Bernie from Weekend at Bernies. Does Andrew McCarthy need to prop you up to meet me? Are you wearing Bermuda shorts?

Your gentle grasp also tells me you probably couldn’t handle a woman like me. How can I expect you to protect me from grizzly bears when we go camping if you receive my hand like it might be infected with MRSA or monkey pox? Hell, how can I even trust you to hand the pizza guy money with a palm so pathetically paltry? Get a grip on your grip, homeboy, because an assured shake would go a long way with me.

[Update: Yes, this applies to girls too. They are not immune from this criticism. I've reconsidered friendships over limp handshakes. Who wants to hang out with a limp handshake giver? NO ONE, that's who.]

16 comments:

Julia said...

probably my biggest bonerkiller

thewegger said...

This kills me. I don't even know how to react to the dead fish handshake from a girl. It's not like I want to get into some sort of hand squeezing death match, but c'mon... she's not porcelain.

achagallery said...

Completely agree here. I like a nice, firm handshake, while looking at me, preferably while smiling and saying it's great to meet me at the same time.

Anna said...

I've totally done this! I met Travis from Gym Class Heroes backstage at Warped Tour last year and I gave him the limpest handshake ever. I wanted to invent a time machine and go back five minutes and do it over. I was mortified! Usually I'm such a confident shaker. I don't know what happened there. The only thing I was left shakin' was my head.

juliahays said...

Bad handshakes from anyone of any gender are super lame.

thewegger said...

Anna - so... that's pretty atypical. I'm gonna Madlibs your story to prove my point.

"I met THEWEGGER from NOT COOL ENOUGH TO BE IN A BAND at A CRAPPY ALMOST-VFW BAR IN TRENTON last WEEKEND and I gave him the AWESOMEST handshake ever. I wanted to invent a time machine and go back five minutes and TAKE A PICTURE BECAUSE IT WAS SO TEXT-BOOK PERFECT..."

...except the girl I met while seeing a mutual friend's band last weekend just gave me her hand. I kinda wanted to check her pulse.

juliahays - seriously.

Jon K said...

Just to play devil's advocate here, I've been guilty on more than one occasion of the flacid handshake, but every time for the same reason: If you're not entirely sure if you're going to be giving/getting a handshake or a hug. Leaving your arm in a neutral location in order to reasonably accept either of the two can put you in a weird position where you don't have the necessary angle or thrust velocity to execute a professional-quality handshake.

So, on behalf of the fish-fisted nationwide, before taunting, consider this: did he just maybe expect a hug was coming?

Baby J said...

Smooshy handed dudes freak me out completely.

Gauthier said...

Smooshy handshakes are the worst - however, I must admit once in a while the other person closes their hand too soon, grasping only up to the second knuckle... wish I had a do-over.

LizardQueen said...

I need more insights like Jon's, because I really, really, really don't understand weak handshakes. Everyone knows they're bad!! So why do people give them? There have definitely been times when a guy (or girl) gave me a horrid shake and I couldn't believe how much it made me judge and dislike them as much as I know it's not reasonable to judge so much on such a thing. Conversely I've gotten some great shakes that instantly put the person in my good corner.

Diane said...

This might be one of my favorite posts on this blog ever. Jon's insight is a VERY good point indeed... except it doesn't explain everything for me. What about when I shake the hand of someone in a professional setting, like a student applying to work in my lab? Ugh, it has happened to me so many times, and it practically disgusts me on a physical level. I am so unimpressed by this lame appendage I'm being forced to touch and move around right now, why would I ever trust you with my data and my birds?? I have to bite my tongue to keep from responding in such a scenario, because I know I should be fair and give everyone a chance... blegh.

Jon K said...

I feel like we're missing a very important piece of information here, due mostly to the phrase "why would I ever trust you with my data and my birds??"

It might just be me, but that makes so very little sense to me haha.

Julia said...

Jon
It makes little to no sense to me as well

Diane said...

Uh-oh, I'm not making sense? I do research in an aviary, and I hire students to help run the lab, as in collect data and feed the birds. When a student applies to my lab, but does a less-than-half-assed attempt to complete a handshake, I worry about the confidence level of this student, thus how much I can rely on them to be a good, independent worker. Which might be completely unfair of me, but c'mon... you're meeting me for the first time! It's an interview for a job position. Impress me! Shake the hand!!

Jon K said...

Ahhhhh.

I thought 'trusting someone with your birds' was a euphemism for something.

Diane said...

ahahaha! It could also mean that too. ;)

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