I had a friend who had a theory that if you shook hands with another and that person had shaken hands with somebody notable you had, by default, shaken hands with that famous person, too. You know, if he’d shaken Obama’s hand and then you clasped his mandible in yours, then you too had shaken the president’s hand.
In Canada if you’d shaken hands with Pamela Wallin you’d first want to make sure you’d gotten it back – you know, with all that sense of entitlement and all – but then whoever shook your hand later would also be shaking hers, and so on and so forth.
In the case of my friend he had once shaken hands with Hubert Humphrey (how soon we forget), so I guess I too have shaken hands with LBJ’s Veep, and hence likely LBJ and JFK and all the other guys that notables are entitled to caress digits with. Becomes a pretty exponential thing eventually.
I suppose it could be argued in a kind of six degrees manner, that if you shook hands with enough people eventually you’d have by default had contact with every human who ever lived right back to the beginning of time.
I’ve shaken hands with a few in my life. In the newspaper business you get to meet a fair number of notable individuals in politics, entertainment and so forth. So, come out and shake hands with me sometime and you’ll be greeting the world in a manner of speaking.
I suppose the same thing could have been said of having danced with somebody notable. I once danced with a woman who was a great-great grandniece of the last Tsar of Russia. Now, I mean how cool is that? Reminds me of the old music hall song entitled, roughly: “I met a man who danced with a girl who’d danced with a man who’d danced with a girl who’d danced with the Prince of Wales.”
Now, if you want to carry the paradigm right through to sexual intercourse by default, I’ll leave you to your own musings.
The one handshake that I had that struck me in a rather different way was when I once shook hands with George Chuvalo, one-time Canadian heavy weight champ and a thoroughly nice gent. He had, in his day, fought all the biggies, like Foreman and especially Ali, among others.
All I could think as he extended a paw the size of a Thanksgiving ham, I’m shaking hands with the fist that once slugged the great Ali. I felt humbled.