Have you noticed when President Trump shakes hands, he puts a little
extra into it? When he greets friends and foreign dignitaries, he'll
shake for about 5 seconds, which is standard, BUT THEN, he'll PULL
the other person IN toward him. This is unusual. This is elevating
glad-handing to a new level!
Webster's Dictionary defines a handshake as: "a gripping of each
others hand in a greeting or agreement."
There's much to be said about a simple handshake, BUT, Mr. Trump,
known for his book, 'The Art of the Deal', has lead me to a topic I'm
sure he would call:
THE ART OF THE HANDSHAKE.
It happens in most cultures around the world. There are many styles.
Many methods. More importantly, there's a subliminal message expressed
in every person's handshake. I can't speak for Mr. Trump, but to me,
the optics show his handshake signifies strength and dominance with
the caveat of 'I am in control here AND you will obey me' kind of a
feeling. A little weird, but hey, he is the President, and it is
Now, in honor of Mr. Trump and because he is a New Yorker, I am
unofficially calling this: "THE YANKee Handshake'. The YANK for
short! It must me noted that he was mocked by the press and the YANK
handshake called "awkward" when he pressed the flesh with Japan's
prime minister Shinzo Abe. I mean it went on, and on......for like 30
seconds. Weird!! I was pleasantly surprised to see Canadian Prime
Minister Trudeau was aware and prepared and giving no ground to Mr.
Trump when they shook hands a day later.
Let's look at some other forms of:
THE ART OF THE HANDSHAKE.
The Standard Handshake is commonly called The Firm Handshake. Palms
meet. Up and down movement for 3 to 6 seconds and release. The
standard issue. No frills. Friendly. Strictly business.
The Dead Fish. A limp hand that signifies passive indifference and
weakness. These folks are quite introverted.
Sweaty Palms. A cold, nervous tension in the hand denoting shyness.
The Crusher. So strong the it can make the average person wince in
pain. This denotes a controlling personality.
The Hand Hug. Left hand covering the other persons right hand. Used
by Politicians to signify warmth, honesty and trustworthiness.
The Dominator. When a person points the right hand down it connotes
power and dominance.
The Soul Brotha' Shake. Palms meet with a slight slap, then, each
person grips the others thumb for a couple of seconds, then a release
to palm to palm, then, slide into a finger clutch for a second and
release with an occasional snap of the fingers, all while touching
shoulders in a half hug. All this denotes being in the Inner Circle.
This is about as close as you can get to a secret handshake.
The High or Low Five. These two qualify because the palms do come
together. Both have a loud slap sound signifying joy, happiness and
The Gunslinger. I learned this one from LLoyd Carr, the Michigan
Football coach in the mid 90's. The right hand starts at the hip and
swings toward the other person's hand. The palms meet with a solid
slap and then a normal shake ensues. If this is done right when the
palms meet they might make a "pop" sound. The ULITMATE SHOW OF
The Sports Team Shuck and Jive. Game time dramatics. Some of the
players have such incredibly complex hand shakes and dances, they defy
So there you have it. These are just some examples of the manner,
method, and social significance of a common everyday occurrence. The
basic handshake. It's communication. It's symbolic. It's revealing.
It's a way for people to express their inner self. After all, thanks
to Mr. Trump, we must understand, it's all about.....