How To Get By: The Keys to Social Interactions

Section 1. The End of Any Interaction

Let’s start with the end. While saying two words seems to be an easy task it is obviously not. The two

words can be interpreted as rude, nice, romantic, sad and almost every other emotion. When saying,

“goodbye” one does not want to speed up the words, because it can be rude and interpreted as if one would

like to leave. Saying the words too slowly can seem as if one is bored by the interaction. Saying, “Goodbye”

too sharply can seem as if one is too energetic and was agitated during the conversation. To guarantee a

perfect goodbye on should think about the phrase for at least five to ten minutes before the delivery. One

needs to produce a crisp and dry goodbye because that always ensures that one has listened and enjoyed

the interaction. The goodbye should be as crisp as a turkey that has been left in the oven way too long. In

addition to the crispiness of the goodbye one must ensure the delivery of the term with an additional clarity.

One wants the recipient to feel that the phrase is clearly produced into layman’s terms. When delivering the

goodbye, keep in mind that a crispy and clear goodbye is the key, and a fast or leisurely goodbye can lead to

catastrophe and all out fights. A weak goodbye once led me to an all out fistfight. My mother and I haven’t

spoken since, so always articulate a goodbye extremely crispy.

38. Mastering the art of eye contact

Although it is natural to look into others eyes, intense eye contact is to be avoided at all times. One must

make sure that eye contact is never maintained for more than three seconds or else it is a sign of disrespect,

but keep in mind that staring into space is also impolite. Treat the recipient like an enraged bear, one wants

to keep an eye on the bear, but does not stare into the bear’s eyes or else it will attack. In addition to eye

contact, it is crucial not to excessively blink either, because twitches are a sure sign of disrespect. In the case

of serious eye twitching, rather than expose an extremely rude eye, one should wear an eye patch to cover

up that turbulent eye. Make sure to remember the rhyme, “1…2…3…4 look over at the door, 5…6…7…8 in her

teeth there is food she/he just ate,” while following these procedures by making sure not to stare at your

fellow speaker while not staring into the distance.

126. The Handshake: Trap or Greeting

While shaking hands there are a few maneuvers one should master. The first and the most important

aspect of this move is the grip. When grasping onto another person’s hand on should not simply squeeze,

but grab. Squeezing one’s hand is pressuring the hand rather than complimenting it, and to avoid this brute

force, grabbing uses a consensual method to the handshake rather than the single handed and abusive

squeeze. When grabbing a hand one should apply energy to the entire hand rather than on a painful

pinpoint. Additionally, a clasp is a weak and petty attempt to initiate a conversation, and a painful

handshake. Both improper shakes can lead to fights, arguments, disputes, and worse. It is vital to have a

perfect grip in any situation. Another important feature of the shake is the moistness of one’s hand. The

Shaker should make sure to thoroughly clean and wipe any sweat or water off of a hand before the gesture

commences. A clammy hand is one of the worst mistakes one can make in any social interaction. A sweaty

hand is equivalent to the rudeness of scratching a knee while in a conversation. If the Handshake is with a

close friend one can attempt a very advanced move, the shake to hug. This move requires constant practice

and when performed right is a work of art. One goes in as if it is a simple shake then slowly transitions into a

hug. Do Not Try Unless Mastered. When performing this complex shake one should use caution in case of

disaster. In addition to all of these maneuvers, for extra flair one can add a few bumps on the back. Always

remember during a handshake that one must grab not squeeze.

While following the guidelines of this book you the reader can officially claim that he or she socially

responsible and impeccable, and can freely roam the social jungle of our world. Using lessons gleaned in

this book like the proper form to drink water, shake hands, and excuse oneself to the water closet, one

will be able to amaze any boss, family, or friend with your spectacular social skills.

Congratulations!

Be sure to buy the sequel to this book, How To Get By: Social Interactions (Advanced Edition). The

Advanced Edition is full of great and advanced moves such as, the Over and Under High Five, the Chest

Bump, and how to free style handshakes.


Matthew Zlotnick, Age 14, Grade 8, Rodeph Sholom, Silver Key

This entry was written by NYC Scholastic Awards and published on December 20, 2013 at 4:00 pm. It’s filed under Humor, Writing. Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

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