High-five R.I.P.

Its hard to know where the gesture of high-fiving actually started, but lets assume it was in the field of sportslikely college basketball. High-fiving celebrates an act representing an apex of an already elevated form of (typically) sport, so to all you middle-aged, beer-bellied, televised sports-watchin, nap-takin, favorite-player jersey wearin, doctored photo of Tom Brady with your head Adobe-Photoshopped onto his body hangin on your office wall High-Fivers, unless you came within one cut of making a professional sports team, alright already with the high-fiving. If your wife has just given birth, shake my hand and give me a cigarplease dont high-five me. If your favorite player bangs a walk-off homer, yelp, buy the boys a round, but dont high-five em. While dining out your server takes orders of your party of 10 without writing any of the orders down, then brings the food to all the right folks, dont high-five her, increase her tip. High-fiving by the common man is sophomoric and painful to watch, and we dont even do it right. I dont know how to explain how to do it right, I just know a proper high-five when I see one; and with the exception of the occasional high school athlete, Ive never seen anyone who wasnt being paid millions of dollars to play a game look good doing it. When folks first started high-fiving I tried it a few times, but I felt like a phony. I felt I was busting in on a fraternity whose members earned the right to high-five. I felt the frequency with which folks high-fived was over the top (I feel the same about how standing ovations have become commonplace now instead of being held for a supreme acknowledgement of an especially fine presentation). So, I swore I would stop high fiving. I did itcold turkey. Now Ive noticed even professional athletes appear to be done with the high-five gesture. Now when they celebrate a play (all too often), they run, jump up, and ram into each other. Yeah, thats how Id describe itthey ram into each other and push each other around, good n hard. A football player makes a great hit and tackle; as he gets back up, out of nowhere, a guy from his own team will come running at full speed, jump up, and bang into him harder than the guy he tackled. Cant wait until all you John Does start doing that! Yeah, the next time you win 15 bucks on an Instant Scratch-Off you better be careful walking out of the Cumberland Farms convenience store because I might come a runnin around the corner, full blast, jump up and bang into you. If you dont want to do the new bang-body celebration gesture, the door is open for you to create your own unique method of celebration via physical contact. Go for it; teach it to me, and Ill join inmaybe. High-fiving and body-banging are examples of follow-the-leader type living. Following the leader represents, to me anyway, an uninteresting course of life. Thats why, whether or not I like Barack Obama and his wife Michelle, short of finding the cure for the common cold, I aint fist-bumpin em. And if I ever see Michelle Obama fist-bump Hillary Clinton Im clearing the room. Rusty DeWees tours Vermont and Northern New York with his act The Logger. His column appears weekly. He can be reached at rustyd@pshift.com. Listen for The Logger, Rusty DeWees, Thursdays at 7:40 on the Big Station, 98.9 WOKO or visit his website at www.thelogger.com

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