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Wednesday, December 2, 2020

Handshakes? Out. Shoulder Bashes? The New Greeting

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - You should never shake hands again.

When President Donald John Trump has described the American practice of handshaking as “disgusting” or “barbaric” or “one of the curses of American society”, he's absolutely correct. And I came to that conclusion long before I've heard President Donald John Trump's opinion on the matter. It shouldn't be a partisan issue, really. You don't know what the hell is going on with someone else's hand.

Unfortunately, the lessons from Ebola have largely been forgotten, though my very negative Ebola experience with the CDC is still on my mind. There are Ebola-era studies around how fist bumps spread less germs than high-fives, which spread less germs than the disastrous handshake.

Basically, when you shake someone's hand with your own, you're spreading germs and all kinds of nasties from your body to the other person's, and vice-versa, in a very elongated, intimate fashion. (After all, people value STRONG handshakes, which press your germ-y diseased flesh forcibly upon another person's.) Meanwhile, alternative physical greetings reduce the amount of surface area involved, which reduces the amount of microbial spread.

The best greeting is one that involves no contact at all. What's wrong with the hand wave?

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Zelda down taunt Hilda joyful hand wave
A socially distanced (at least 6 feet) waving of hands is a perfectly viable way to exchange pleasantries and greetings.

However, in case you simply must touch someone (because there are neurological benefits to physical contact, including the brain releasing the stress-relieving oxytocin), I suggest the mutual shoulder bash:

Super Smash Bros. ultimate two Wario shoulder bash dash attack
These two shoulder bashers are practicing their craft. They need to get their faces much further apart, however.

I've described why handshaking is dangerous, but I didn't describe what happens afterwards. Humans use their hands for things for far more than shaking other people's hands. They touch everything with their hands. Door handles, food, game controllers, and their own face or hair. Sometimes humans even touch their own... personal sensitive areas. It's normal culture to declare WASH YOUR HANDS upon LEAVING a bathroom, but it's not upon entering one. Assuming that the bathroom even has suitable amenities to begin with. It's messed up and anti-sanitary.

(Wash your hands before AND after doing your business.)

Meanwhile, you touch pretty much nothing with your shoulders. A few folks carry the weight of the world on them, and sometimes humans hoist backpacks’ straps on them. Stuff that gets on your shoulders aren't going to go anywhere, making them much more sanitary for person-to-person physical interaction than hands.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate cursed image double Wario shoulder bash model clipping overlapping mirror

Ludwig doesn't handshake, due to not having hands but claws and feet. Clawshakes aren't a Koopa custom, which is why the spell checker has a red underline beneath that word. You humans should follow suit.

By 2022, commercials are refusing to have their characters handshake or even high-five, to Ludwig's happiness.


  1. That last picture is more like a face-bash than a shoulder bash. XD

  2. or you can do fortnite dances to each other when greeting each other that would be kinda POGGERS.

  3. Intersting, i will heed this advice, and look it's warioware wario! Have you ever played those games?

    1. I've played them but without owning them, such as back when I had friends and were invited to their houses for the GameCube one, or demo stands for WarioWare Touched or WarioWare Twisted.

      Most recently WarioWare Gold's demo.

  4. Let's not forget the other greeting that went quickly out of style.

  5. I am not a touchy-feely person so the new normal during and hopefully after Covid will be such a great change for me.


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