The Official Handshake Etiquette Guidebook

Everything you need to know about shaking hands. Seriously.

Shaking hands is a greeting ritual that dates back to the early Neolithic period, and it was somewhere around that time when people decided it was more appropriate than licking someone’s face to acknowledge a clan member.

This custom along with its many variations have lead to some confusion since the advent of Instagram, but fret not!  We have officially been commissioned by The International Handshaking and Other Hand Gestures Council to construct a brief quick-reference guide to hand-humping.  It was a free gig and we take what we can get.

Below you’ll find a list of handshakes that are internationally recognized by the council.

Please print this list and keep it for future reference in case you meet people not on Facebook.

1.  The Double Embrace

This variation is a particularly intimate one which involves a two-handed grab, or embrace by one of the hand-shaking parties.

See below:

670px-Have-a-Persuasive-Handshake-Step-2

It’s…

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Nobody Loves Everybody Loves Raymond

Hello. My favorite show in the whole wide world is on. Again. Another re-run. I love re-runs. I’m being facetious of course when I say that it’s my favorite. And right now I’m close, very close, to gaining the ultimate satisfaction trip after I rip the TV out of the fucking wall and throw it through somebody’s car window.

It will be like that scene from Office Space when they beat up the fax machine with baseball bats in a field, only this scene will feature an Adidas shoe, and maybe a rock, and a TV, and I just want to see Ray Barone’s digital face behind a piece of shattered glass for once.  Do they make TV screens out of glass?  Or plastic?  I don’t care.

Whatever they use, it better sound cool when I break it.

There’s no way people watch shittiness of this magnitude. This…show…should be aired on TV’s in terrorist detention camp cells. You know what?  Speaking of, I’d rather get waterboarded with chocolate milk than have to sit here and listen to this whiny d-bag and his bitchy wife argue about sex.

Wait, did I see this episode? The one where Ray and what’s-her-face are arguing about sex?

Bitchy Wife: No Ray. Not tonight. I’m tired.

Raymond: But you’re always tired!

Bitchy Wife: Oh stop whining, Ray.

*Laugh Track*

Raymond: But there was that one time when I did that favor.  For you! Remember that favor?

*Laugh Track*

Bitchy Wife: Ray, putting the toilet seat down isn’t a favor.

*Laugh Track*

Raymond: Yeah, yeaaaahh. Remember that time? When I did that? I did that for yooou. Yeah, see?

*Laugh Track*

Another great episode, darling.

Another great episode, darling.

Somebody should bring that show back long enough to fire the writers.

bigfoot siting copy

And here’s a picture of Baronefoot.

You have 40 seconds to live, Toshiba.

Long Awkward Pause Pop Quiz Winner Announced!

Find out the winner of the LAP Pop Quiz contest, and also find out which of those Chiwderheads set off the model rocket in the bedroom…

LAP Aniversary Banner____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Boy, placing an exclamation point after a contest announcement really hypes it up, eh?  Exclamation points add so much excitement!  Without one, the context completely changes.

But enough of the grammar lessons, because it’s time to reveal the winner of the Long Awkward Pause Pop Quiz!  And one more exclamation point just for fun!

Here are the results: 

KSBETH:  20%

SHE’S A MAINEIAC:  20%

THE TATTOO TOURIST:  10%

KRISTEN MCCLARY:  40%

AMY REESE:  0%

EVA:  40%

JACKIE P:  20%

PINK DONUT:  30%

KENDALL F. PERSON:  10%

And the winner is…

ALWAYS A REDHEAD!  50%

Congratulations, Catherine!  Clearly you remembered the most important lesson in school:  if you didn’t study, just guess the letter C.  One of our representatives will be contacting you shortly, and please have your webcam handy when our prize patrol shows up at your door.

Here’s the answer key:

Question 1:

Which member of LAP…

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Help us Celebrate our One Year Anniversary with a Chance to Win Cash and Prizes!

LAP turns one year old today! We’re doing a fun little pop quiz to see how well you know the staff, and we’re even giving *something away!

LAP Aniversary Banner

Today is a very special day here at Long Awkward Pause because it marks our first year anniversary!

*Throws confetti*

*Spits out confetti*

After all the hard work and bantering that’s gone on over the past year, we’ve decided to conduct a pop quiz today to see how well you think you know the staff.

For the first time ever we’re pulling back the curtains to give you a peek into the top-secret lives of each of the group’s members.  In order to do that however, we’re gonna need a little bit of participation from you.

In the spirit of exhibitionism and for the sake of educational purposes, and after signing a liability waiver under duress, each of our staff writers forked over a handful of juicy personal tidbits about themselves to make today’s quiz possible.

Some of these facts are embarrassing, some are enlightening, and some are just  plain ridiculous – but all of…

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The 12 Step Guide to Assembling Cheap Furniture

Having trouble assembling your cheap, piece of shit furniture? So am I.

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Knowing how to assemble cheap furniture is an important domestic skill that is often overlooked today.  It’s not as valuable as learning how to iron out the perfect pleat, or how to remove alcohol-enriched vomit stains from your microsuede, but it’s up there.

Please note that no matter what type of cheap furniture piece you decide to purchase, the assembly procedure will always require a minimum of 12 steps.  If you follow this how-to guide accurately, the procedure should end up being a complete pain in the ass.  That’s how you’ll know you did it right.

Estimated time to complete average assembly: 7 hours – 2 weeks.
Level of competency required: none – very little.

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Preassembly

After you’ve made your purchase, begin the preassembly stage by lugging the piece of shit into your living room, making sure to damage any walls and/or casual bystanders within close proximity to your…

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5×5 With The Hook: Chowderhead.

Join me over at the Hook’s place as he interviews me on romance (huh?), sidekicks (not the car or the phone), Long Awkward Pause (why haven’t you subscribed yet?), and just life in general…

You've Been Hooked!

You requested that some beefcake be added to your 5×5 menu, but how about some chowder instead?

On the mean virtual streets of the blogosphere, he’s THE MAN, the one you want to be, the one who has lived the blogging experience to the fullest. I kid you, not this cat has seen and done things that constitute the ultimate blogging fantasy. He’s formed lasting connections and crated virtual playgrounds that are flourishing. He is Adam Sendek, his moniker isChowderhead and he is my most honored guest today. Hi there!

This guy has been an innovator from the get-go; he has his own dictionary, he is avalued staff member at Long Awkward Pause, he has mad banner production skills and I’m given to understand that he is a gentle and considerate lover; a young lady will always wake up in his bed with cab fare affixed to…

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Cigarette Tourette’s

I am a smoker.  And, if there were enough hours in the day I’d probably smoke a carton.  I’d smoke four at a time – lighting fresh ones with butts – blowing smoke rings out of my nose.  I’d blow it in the faces of innocent bystanders where am I going with this? Ok, I don’t like smoking that much.  But I still like the shit out of it.

Hey lookie there you're doing it right.

Hey lookie there you’re doing it right.

Despite how much I like smoking, it was probably the stupidest thing I ever did. 

I quit one time, and the first week was on par with heroine or methadone withdrawal. I bit one of my fingers off.  There were shredded napkins everywhere.  My eyeball fell out.  I might have thrown up blood at some point.  But other than that, things went pretty well.

You don’t really realize how engrained it is in your routine until you stop doing it, and after that, you get the crabby panty syndrome, or what I call, ‘Cigarettes Tourette’s’.  

It goes something like this:

*pacing*

CH:  I don’t know what to do with my FUCK hand I need to smoke something SHIT and this straw is not working LLAMA not DICK working at all and this gum FUCK sucks and it tastes like rubber and SHIT chalk I can’t see straight and the lights are FUCK dimming.

And that’s why I quit the first time. Because somebody said to me somewhere once that this is a healthier alternative to smoking.  I felt fine before I quit, and then that.  Peer pressure.  Again.  

That’s without a doubt the worst part about being a smoker – having to listen to some obese man with a cholesterol problem lecture me on the reasons why I should quit smoking while he is chewing on a rib bone.  Duly noted, sir.  And now please wipe the sodium-rich barbecue sauce off your face because it’s making me look at it. 

This STRAW.  SUCKS.

This STRAW. SUCKS.

But all these ads with smoking fetuses, and some girl with cigarette butts on her tongue, and voice box guy – it’s all too much.  SHUT UP I’m trying to concentrate on smoking.  I get it.  We all get it.  I’m waving the white flag indicating that you’re right.  You win.  Smoking is bad. 

So here I am now, staring at a box of Chantix and wondering what the shelf life is on this drug is.  It’s an ugly box.  A stupid box.  I’m not sure when I’m going to eat them.  I not sure I want to eat them.  If I eat them it’s going to be like that scene in Titanic at the end when Jack is sinking to the bottom of the Atlantic:

Cigarettes, come back.  

Come back, pack.

Pack, come FUCK back…

**Bonus Contest Alert **Bonus Contest Alert**Bonus Contest Alert**

If you guess correctly what kind of cigarettes I smoke, I’ll make you a free banner or some badges for your Facebook/Twitter pages.  But one guess only, cheaters!

And don’t stop smoking, because quitting is bad for you.

\m/

Talking in Circles with a Circle Talker

I think I wrote this last year..?

What’s up?

It’s a simple question that should illicit a relatively straightforward and immediate reply.

In fact, “not much” would be an adequate enough response, because that would mean that the conversation is now over, and we can all move on with our lives with a sense of closure in regard to the initial inquiry into your present state of affairs.

If a normal person approached another normal person and asked that question, they’d probably have no problem giving a direct response.  And, depending on the level of intimacy that the two people share, the context of the question being asked, and whether or not person A has to be someplace important, like, for instance, anywhere else, the entire exchange should take milliseconds.

coaching-is-not-therapy “And then I got really really dizzy. I didn’t know what he was talking about, and it made me so mad and sad at the same time…

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The Blog Hop Starts Here!!!

In case you missed the Blog Hop backstory, you can read about it HERE.

The goal was to demonstrate that an episode of either Anxiety or Depression can in fact have an application:  awesome, and sometimes downright hilarious fiction.  Why not laugh at the quirks?  Sitting around and crying into a bowl of chicken noodle soup never did shit for me personally.  Everybody on the tour has had some kind of experience with either, and I don’t think it’s a coincidence that we also know how to write some kick ass fiction.  Screw the label.  Screw the stigma.  At the source of it all is an active imagination, and a fabulous fictional tale awaits.

There are twelve writers ahead of me today, with each of them featuring the next part of this highly outlandish tale, and each post is around 200 words. Here’s a double shot of humor to go along with your morning espresso.

*kicks door down Chuck Norris-style*

Set.  GO!

The Most Outlandish Tale About Anxiety and Depression Ever Told

So anyways, I was meandering around the mall the other day, bags in hand, when I accidentally ran into this little elderly lady with white hair.  We literally ran into each other.  Clumsy me.  We were both very apologetic toward each other after the bump-in however, and immediately went our separate ways.

A short while later, I accidentally bumped into the same elderly woman while in a different outlet store, only this time I was in a hurry, so I ran into her pretty hard – like, she was on one leg at some point and almost kicked me in the face as she was tipping backwards.  The woman was less apologetic this time as she adjusted her knee-highs, but managed to eek out a half-grin before we again parted company.

I was starting to grow a little bit paranoid at this point, hoping that I wouldn’t accidentally run into her again.  I started thinking about all these crazy what-if scenarios, and my head turned into a washing machine of bad thoughts…

What if she had a contagious skin infection?  Maybe I should find a bathroom and scrub my arm?  What if we keep bumping into each other for a reason?  What’s the reason?  Maybe she’s my soulmate? WHAT IF SHE WORKS FOR THE MOB AND SHE’S GONNA FUCKING KILL ME IF I BUMP INTO HER AGAIN?!

I had to get out, and quickly.

My fragile existence was now at stake and…

…THAT LEG WAS PRETTY HAIRY TOO NOW THAT I THINK ABOUT IT!

I dashed out the mall entrance door and threw my bags in a nearby bush…

Continue the story by clicking here

Blog Hop: The Most Outlandish Anxiety Tale Ever Told

Have you ever had one of those moments where suddenly, out of nowhere, you felt really nervous for absolutely no reason?  Maybe, like, you’re standing in line at the grocery store, staring at someone’s bananas on the conveyor belt…

…and then you begin creating this catastrophic what-if scenario in your head in which you all of the sudden FREAK OUT and hold up the register with a banana under your shirt, which leads to some kind of hostage situation, which leads to police helicopters and news reporters and swat teams, which leads to your mugshot being flashed on CNN headline news everywhere, which leads to getting hit in the head with one of those bean bag guns, which leads to you going to prison, which leads to having to share a cot with some guy named Dimples who likes to cuddle, which leads to a terrifying stroll down the death row corridor with a potato sack over your head, which leads to being strapped into the electric chair…

…and then the very polite girl at the register timidly says, “your total is $4.99”, sir, and you’re all like,

“PLEASE DON’T SEND ME TO PRISON IT’S JUST A BANANA LOOK!”

And then everybody looks at you with weird looks on their faces, and probably thinking to themselves that that’s exactly where you belong…

I will...smash...this...or something...in your face if you don't give me money.

I will…smash…this…or something…in your face if you don’t give me money.

That’s called Anxiety. I do that sometimes.  Well, sorta..

But it got me to thinking (irony) about how much anxiety (and depression) have helped me write stories. After all, that’s basically what anxiety is, right?  I guess it’s all in how you look at it.  Are you a “poor, helpless anxiety sufferer”?  Or, do you have the gift of being a fucking great fiction writer?  When you think about it, having a freak out episode, or an anxiety or panic attack, or a grey matter meltdown, or whatever you wanna call it, is nothing but a series of creatively fabricated events that never happen. It’s fiction.  A lot of the time, it’s really good fiction.

So I thought it would be a cool idea to celebrate our varying degrees of mainstream neuroticism by kicking of a BLOG HOP starting HERE this Thursday.  Anxiety deserves a laugh, and for that matter, Depression does too.  Rather than sit around and cry about it, why not recognize these things as gifts?  They are weird gifts, yes: “Gee, thanks for this, um, gift stuff…”

The point I’m trying to make is this: Apply it to Something.  Many already do, and just don’t recognize it.  Maybe you’ll learn to recognize it beginning today?

The blog-hopping story – similar to the one told at the intro to this post – will mozy on down a long trail of other crazy people – all with the ability to produce great anxiety-inspired fiction.  If it works (it’s already working), you’ll get a chance to read a really funny, highly outlandish story, collectively told in very small parts by a lot of really talented writers.  You’ll get to visit all off your buds, click the like button, fart, and move on to the next blog in no time flat.

Sound like fun? It will be!

Want to join?  You should!

Sign on the dotted line in the comment section!

Oh, and Psst!  Ericka Clay is playing along at some point along the story path, so you know it’s gonna be 2 legit to quit.  Nothing like a good old fashioned name drop.

Salute \m/