Month: September 2012

To Bump or not to Bump

To Bump or not to Bump that is the question..

The fist bump conundrum is sweeping the globe. From the creation of the fist bump to present times. Many people are still confused and unsure of proper fist bump etiquette. What or rather when is the suitable time for a wicked fist bump?  How does one react when one person wants to bump, and you want to shake, or hive-five?

The “First Bump”

Lets start with the origin of the fist bump, someone had to start the madness, right? The fist bump, also referred to The Pound, Knuckle Blaster, Bro Fist, Fo’ Knuckles, or a  Knuckle touch, is a gesture when two participants form closed fists and lightly touch knuckles, (that really makes it sound Bad Ass doesn’t it?) The known first fist bump on record is a little “shaky”. According to some it can be traced back to the 1800s as the “Boxers first hand shake”. There is also a cited instance where NBA player Fred Carter of the Baltimore Bullets in the 1970s preformed a fist bump with another player. Despite all the controversy around the first fist, I like to believe the true origins came from the 1970s Hanna-Barrera cartoon classic “Super Friends” where the superheros would fist bump and say in unison “Wonder Twin Powers Activate!”

Again, pretty Bad Ass right?

However the fist bump started one thing is for certain, it is here to stay.

The collision of the bump vs. shake

You know that awkward moment, when you are going in for the bump and the other guy assumes the high five position. This soon can get out of “hand” (pun totally intended) in which a few scenarios are likely. One development that is very likely to take place is the legendary awkward  fist conversion confusion. This is  when both partakers chose to convert, and the game continues until someone recognizes the situation and verbally points out the unpleasant predicament or goes with it, and a flump occurs. Another possible outcome could be running into “that guy” you know the one who senses the impending fist bump confusion on the horizon. He improvises, and what you end up with is some one armed shoulder hug, with a gentle fist bump to the spine type thingy. No one is entirely sure what just happened, and after an interaction like that you are a little nervous for the next time the two of you intermingle. Last but not at all least is the notorious stand off, where neither party wants to convert. this will always end in a flump or worse, an end of all friendly gestures with the individual, until dominance is re-established.  This is usually accomplished thru the ritual of swapping sports knowledge until one of the participants backs down. In this heated discussion a mediator is usually present. Please note this situation will not apply to girls.

Bump etiquette:

1. Bumping is acceptable, at all sporting events sans NASCAR.

2. Bumping is not allowed when meeting a person for the first time, nor is it appropriate for business transactions, (please note above photo of awkwardness) a traditional hand shake is recommended.

3. Bumping is NEVER proper at a funeral or in the hospital, I really can’t think of any scenario where a high five would be appropriate here either. It is highly suggested you stick with the shake.

4. When wearing a suit or business attire, a fist bump is only acceptable when drunk, or when parts of your suit or clothing is tied around parts of your body, most commonly your head.

5. When inebriated fist bumps are always preferred to any other greeting. Mostly because high-fives require hand eye coordination that may not be available to you at that time.

Even knowing and applying the rules of fist bumping it is still inevitable that you will run into that unsavory situation when you have to make a conversion decision. Might I suggest you hold strong to the bump, for one it is much easier to convert an open hand to a fist, (perhaps it just feels like that because you  are the one with the fist and therefore no conversion is required on your behalf). By backing down and converting you risk appearing passive, allowing the other person to dictate the greeting. If you change course and convert to the open palm, you risk the other person converting to the fist, and thus the confusion begins anew. Of course this is all mute if you are the one with the open hand. So in conclusion whatever gesture you deem appropriate, hold strong fist or open hand. Show the other person who can greet like a boss. Don’t back down, it is you who decides your  friendly gesture fate, and will not be pushed around. Just make sure you’re a girl, or you know more than your buddy about sports.

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You know what’s good?

Pudding.

What Do You Like To Do?

What do you like to do in your spare time?

This question can bring a wave of uncomfortable panic into a persons soul. It’s not really all that straightforward is it? There is a lot to contemplate about your answer.

A majority of people respond with what I like to call basic likes or hobbies such as “I like to listen to music, read, and spend time with my friends.” No one ever answers this question honestly. A truly honest answer, might be, “I like to drink in excess, lay around and watch TV, and eat fried foods.”  A person can’t say those things, least they be judged as a fat lazy alcoholic. So this is where the panic sets in…in your mind your thinking, well I don’t know I just kind of go to work, come home, watch TV and sleep. I don’t really have any hobbies. I cant say that though, people will find me uninteresting. So this is where you quickly analyze your options.

You could always go with reading. I think a lot of people always throw this one in because it makes them sound smart, but if you ask them what the last book they read is, you will get one of two things. Either they will say To Kill A Mocking Bird, or some other book they had to read in high-school or college, and if they say this, then you know they are full of it and just really want you to think they are smart or impress you in some way. Or you might get the Fifty Shades of Grey answer which entails some other currently popular book, which means they like to read but are not necessarily well read.

Listening to music is a popular choice. Which is kind of a bull s*** one because really who doesn’t like to listen to music? I think that’s why its a popular choice, the hope here is that the other person will think  “Hey I like music too! how about that!” Then BAM! instant friends right?- wrong, because the next question is always, “what kinda of music do you like?”  err :/ crap! what if I say a type of music they hate, like country or something, (country always seems to be one of those, that people either love it or they hate it) the best way I found out of this scenario is to tell them you like everything, except country of course.

Running, I love it when people say this one, Its not that its untrue necessarily because a lot of people do enjoy running, but I have a sneaking suspicion that some people say this just to sound athletic, (usually found on profile pages). Have you ever had someone tell you they enjoy running and you look at them and are like..yeah no you don’t.

The other problem with this kind of question is, if you say something such as I like to paint pictures or draw, you’d better be pretty amazing at it, because by saying you enjoy doing something it automatically puts you in the running for expert, in this instance you become a self proclaimed artist. The problem with this is if any opportunity arises for you to show off your skills, such as making a bubble letter poster, you automatically become the person responsible for the arty part. If your bubble letters suck ass people will say  “I thought you were an artist” then you’ll have to respond with, ” I said I like to draw, I didn’t say I was good at it?!” and that just makes things really awkward.

The thing is, with a question like what do you like to do?  a lot of judgements can be made depending on the answer. Most people will play it safe, and go with the basics, in order for that first awkward conversation to move along. But what if they say something crazy like I enjoy scaling 40ft. ice walls with a pick axe. Well, now you’re in trouble and you had better come back with something mind-blowing too, otherwise the rest of your conversation will hang on this interesting thing the other person likes to do, and your lack-thereof.

In all honesty, it really doesn’t matter what your likes and hobbies are, or what anyone thinks of them for that matter. The truth is always far more interesting then some contrived conformity, no matter what it is. If it is the truth about yourself that embarrasses you  you then perhaps you need to change yourself and not the answers. Be proud of who and what you are.

As an after thought: Just once in my life,  I would love to answer with something off the wall like “Me? well I like all kinds of things, I like to be a clown on the weekends, I enjoy organizing super-balls  by color and shape, Dressing up like waldo and hiding along the freeway, I also like to summit skyscrapers and enjoy yelling at old people. what do you like to do?

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Someone Died Today.

Someone died today.

It’s no big deal or anything, lots of people die. I think the thing I wonder about is if they could come back, what would they say what advice would they have for us? I doubt it would be anything profound, Like “OMG!! We are all ONE and we must recycle, and by the way God is a black woman.”  I’d like to think it would be more mundane, such as “did I leave the stove on?” or “I wonder what Karl and Sue are up to tonight?”

I imagine they would not regret the risks they took (unless that’s why they are dead :/) they may have regretted not forming close relationships, with the ones they love.  Or not saying I love you enough to their spouse, kids..ext. I suppose whatever their issues are or were they will still there at the time of death. Are any of them happy, does anyone die and say “well I did my best, and lived my life with no regrets”?  I suspect that some do.

This topic is not new. I am certainly not the first to think of death in this way; however I don’t think it does us any harm either. We should not necessarily think of death, but rather think of life. Many times in our lives thoughts arise. Such as, are happy, did we do the right thing, how we’ve been hurt in the past, and how to plan for the future. I think all these thoughts and decisions can be better made when put in the perspective of death. Not in a gothic death is cool way, but in a practical, does this really matter in the end way. I certainly know when I die the last thing I’m going to think about is the expensive car I owned, or whether my mother in law accepted me. I could go on about the mundane things that ramble throughout my head and cause me undue stress on a daily basis, but really it doesn’t matter.  Maybe reminding ourselves of our impending doom can change the way we think about our worries and thoughts.

When I die I think I’ll be more concerned with questions such as, did I live honorably, did I express my love and affection to those I care for, do they know how much they meant to me? Did I spend too much time keeping up with the latest T.V. dramas and not enough time exploring the world? Did I talk too much and not listen, enough? Did I live my life for myself, or did I give enough to others?  Am I happy with the way I conducted myself whilst alive, can I “die” with it?

When it’s my turn to meet my maker, I don’t want to wish I have lived differently. I met those people, you know the ones, they are demanding and selfish, they care only about their gain. They hurt others without a thought of remorse. They are the line skippers; they are the ones who yell at the 16 year old waitress, because their steak is over cooked. They have a sense of entitlement; they are the people who use the phrase “do you know who I am?” I’ve seen them perish and it is sad, because ultimately they die angry and alone, and the only person holding their hand is a stranger, usually a nurse that believes no one should die alone, even the assholes. Seems to me that it’s no way to live or die for that matter.

I guess to end this random thought, it might be best to use the cliche’ live as if you were dying,  but really do it, as if you were dying, not just like you read the quote somewhere and thought  we should all do this…. But what if we all did do that?  What If everyone in the world lived like they were dying!? Now you are looking at mass hysteria!  And for some reason if people think they are dying, they will steal electronics?! Which always gets me in movies? If I thought the world was ending or it was time for survival mode, I might take food and water, but seriously what are you going do with a TV? It’s like they are dying and think their remaining hours would be best spent watching dancing with the stars?  So maybe we shouldn’t live like we are dying. I guess we should all just Live, learn our lessons on the way, be proud of who we are and what we’ve accomplished, and when making a decision, always make sure you can live or rather, die with yourself.