I am vocal about my thoughts. I don’t really hold back for fear of sounding stupid or random. And so, recently, when I was hanging with some friends, I started questioning the new fad of “male hugs”.
For years all me and my buddies did upon running into each other was the strong handshake. No problem there. Some people had the weak, slimy handshake — but if you shook their hand hard enough it was the unspoken hint that they’d better start getting a hand-backbone. But recently, things have started to change.
Now, when I see friends or meet up with them, they approach me with one hand up in the air, wrapping the other one on my back. With a “pat” on the back, and a quick squeeze — they give me this weird half-hug. It’s been disturbing me lately, not because it’s a hug and I’m a homophobe (which I’m not) but because things have changed so quickly and the handshake has turned into the “half-hug”. So, I asked my friends who do this.
Me: So, uh, what’s with this hug thing now?
Friend: Hug thing? What do you mean?
Me: Well… We used to just shake hands… Now when you see me, you give me this weird half-hug thing that you never used to give me. Where’d that come from?
Friend: Dude, I’m just saying hello. It’s nothing, really.
Me: But it’s a hug.
Friend: A half hug.
Like I said before, no one is listening or paying attention.
I don’t know if it’s Queer Eye for the Straight Guy or what, which has caused men in my world to abandon the handshake in lieu of the half-hug. I haven’t asked too many people yet because when you do, well, they try to convince themselves (while explaining it to you) that it’s all good. It’s the most masculine hug anyone could ever give, so why question it from an emotional standpoint.
It’s just a half-hug, and all.
In other news — I am starting to wonder why all my female friends have resorted to kissing me on the forehead.