We have to stop not meeting like this

Added: Markeith Schiavo - Date: 18.10.2021 02:35 - Views: 23578 - Clicks: 6853

A colleague returned from a holiday recently and told me a lovely story about the French. The issue of awkward greetings was also raised at Hay Festival this summer, when the social anthropologist Kate Fox argued that every nation except England had developed a standardized ritual for such moments, be it the Maori nose press, the French with their doubles kisses or the Americans, who hoop, holler and smack each other twice on the ass or something.

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The options flash through our minds, like panels on an unwinnable slot machine: handshake too formal! It is, of course, part of our birthright, this terminal sense of social awkwardness — so ingrained in our national character it has become, to an extent, a self-fulfilling prophecy.

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Misanthropy traces a line through decades of our favourite comedies, from Fawlty Towers to The Office. The latter, one of the most successful cultural exports in modern British history, is arguably more about the physical and mental agony of being English in a social setting than it is about anything else.

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Ms Fox, who recently updated her excellent book Watching the English: the Hidden Rules of English Behaviouris English, but has lived in the US, France and Ireland, so is well placed to reflect on our peculiar inadequacies. Of the many astute passages in the book, one about the weather particularly rings true.

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Rather, we need a new standard, a move that soothes our innate conservatism while bringing us in line with the touchy-feely world in our iPhones. And I think I know the solution.

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The OKAP involves a kiss on one cheek rounded off with a brief cupping of the outside of the arm. In other words, the perfect English compromise. You see the OKAP happening more and more, at housewarming parties and after work drinks across the land. But as with all customs, it will need to be cultivated over time. Not to mention grow up to be adults who can get through an introduction without at any stage wanting to throw themselves under a bus. Type keyword s to search. You may be able to find more information about this and similar content at piano.

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We have to stop not meeting like this

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