the politics of handshakes
April 9, 2005 9:41 PM   Subscribe

Handshakes are an important: They've signaled new eras in international relations, but this week they reaffirmed the sad realities of our time.
posted by trinarian (15 comments total)
Everyone should know by now that handshakes mean nothing other than checking if your opponent had his sword drawn.

Now if Charles had kissed Mugabe...
posted by ?! at 9:51 PM on April 9, 2005

...he would have known what Mugabe had for lunch.
posted by Dean Keaton at 10:02 PM on April 9, 2005

Not to mention Chirac kissing Condi ... I'm honestly surprised that the wingers didn't make more of it.

It seems to have been an interesting social occasion all around. Like weddings and funerals often are....
posted by dhartung at 10:03 PM on April 9, 2005

Not to mention Chirac kissing Condi

I love how Kofi is looking on with his, "Hey, good stuff!" approving smile. Poor Kofi. If everyone would stop fighting and start kissing he'd be so much happier.
posted by _sirmissalot_ at 11:50 PM on April 9, 2005

A little silly. I agree that more kisses should be had. I think Charles just turned around and saw a hand sticking out, and thought, "OK, I know this guy... better shake his hand here... sunglasses, some African country where... oh, shit! Break it off! Break it off!" That conflict map is, by the way, incredibly cool.
posted by BlackLeotardFront at 1:08 AM on April 10, 2005

A good, gentlemanly handshake is a must. The next asswipe that attempts to "bang fists" with me, offer up a "forearm bump", or the hip-hop celebirty style half-hug-while-kinda-shaking-hands + pat on the back thing is going to find that I am carrying a sword.
posted by mrblondemang at 1:35 AM on April 10, 2005

I thought it was a bit unfair on Charles to be honest (and I'm not a royalist by any stretch), the 'sign of peace' handshake is part of a standard catholic service, blanking Mugabe on the handshake would probably have ended up being criticised for politicising the pope's funeral. Essentially, the handshake in the circumstance of the Catholic Mass is not the same as a handshake in 'normal' circumstances or even in the circumstances of the freight it carries in international diplomacy. Basically a no-win situation.
posted by biffa at 2:07 AM on April 10, 2005

Not to mention Chirac kissing Condi

Ah, those romantic frenchies - he's stealing Chimpy's girl right in front of him. Even Slick Willy is powerless against the gallic charm.
posted by spazzm at 3:11 AM on April 10, 2005

biffa: as far as i know, it wasn't in the 'sign of peace' part of the mass. it was just mugabe being his normal self and trying to embarrass someone important.
posted by knapah at 4:34 AM on April 10, 2005

I love how this gossip over who touched whom and how at the Pope's funeral is a natural outcome of having so many people covering such a non-story.

I'd like to second BlackLeotardFront's sentiment:

The nobel conflict map deserves its own FPP. Truly.
posted by Busithoth at 7:14 AM on April 10, 2005

?!: some of us wear our swords on the other side.
posted by exlotuseater at 7:38 AM on April 10, 2005

there's a pic of Kofi Annan shaking Laura's hand as Bush looks like he's about to throw up, or run away. She's smiling of course, as always. Bush doesn't even know how to pretend to be Presidential.
posted by amberglow at 7:47 AM on April 10, 2005

Love the conflict map. Truly, one of the best things I've seen posted in a while.

The Prince Charles thing -- for the love of God, who cares? I'm sure I would have done the exact same thing, given that I would never have been able to keep track of who everyone was, even were I a member of the Rulers of the World club. It's a handshake, and not even of the photo-op Rumsfeld-Hussein, we are such good friends variety.

I agree with Busithoth. Billions of reporters, not really a story.

On a somewhat related note, are your market areas STILL getting the "John Paul II is still dead" news updates? Every news report on radio, television, or news paper continues to include some sort of non-update on the pope's, er, condition. WTF?
posted by LittleMissCranky at 9:06 AM on April 10, 2005

All the goofy emphasis on "proper" handshakes leads me to salute, nod, or say hello. Those options also transmit fewer germs.
posted by davy at 10:51 AM on April 11, 2005

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