Friday, November 19, 2004

Handshake etiquette

Here's a little-known bit of etiquette which I picked up from Miss Manners last year: A man should not, in social settings, extend his hand in an offer of a handshake to a woman. It is the prerogative of the woman to make this overture first.

I try to stick to this rule whenever I'm introduced to a woman I don't know, but sometimes I forget and just involuntarily stick my hand out. I've never been called on it, nor have I ever met a woman who balked at me for offering a handshake (or not offering one), but I like to try to stick to these seemingly random etiquette rules.


p.p. said...

Damn. I need to read up on this. All this time I was high-fiving women in professional settings. Is an eye wink still acceptable? :)

Anonymous said...

As I introduced my best friend to my new girlfriend, she says "What, you're not going to shake my hand?" somewhat in shock, and apparently unaware of this rule of etiquette, like myself. So this wierd little faux pas between them had triggered a "wierd" tension that stayed between them and ultimately helped my very special relationship to fail.