Donald Trump Is Bad at Handshakes, Sad!

Pretty simple interaction you just fucked up there, sir.

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Feb 2 2017, 4:44pm

Top image: Screen shot via Twitter

This post originally appeared on VICE UK.

So I'm, like, 20, and my college girlfriend is taking me home to meet her dad. This is fine—beyond the fact that I had to go to Dudley, England, the grayest and most rotten town I ever have seen—and the trip went off mostly without a hitch *. But a week or so before it, she said something to me, the college girlfriend, in a low and warning voice: "He… my dad thinks handshakes are important." And so it was explained to me: Her dad, a perfectly round bald man who bought a new TV every year and a new car every three and read the Sun and once drove me two and a half hours home so he could explain to me why plans for the new mosque were bad—her dad was going to judge everything about me based on the strength and dominance of my opening handshake. He was planning this. He was going to dad me out of town.

This, if you've ever met a girlfriend's dad, is de rigeuer: Dads, their dominance and testosterone fading, just on the cusp of realizing their generation is no longer the active one, ballooning around the waists, no longer vital or attractive, the dads, hairlines receding to their backs. Dads don't have a lot of power left. But they can exert it in some little way, and every chance they get to, they will. They can put importance on a handshake, like it matters.

So what I did was: I read a couple of GQ articles online about how to shake a hand, practiced on a few friends over the course of a week, and then, on the day, I hit him with the sucker: right foot striding forward, firm-yet-balanced grip, two pumps up and down, consistent eye contact, break. An immaculate handshake. The perfect handshake. Great handshake. Enormous. Huge.

Related: What the clean fuck is this?

First second of this is like: "You are going to have to pick up a lot of the slack of this handshake, my friend, because I have arms short and tiny like a Tyrannosaurus";

Second move is… kind of… I mean, he is patting him like you would a good boy, a good dog boy, just a good dog boy who, sadly, you have to put down. This is goodbye, boy, I love you;

Then the third section of the shake is like: "This is my arm. I want it. This is my arm, now. Donald Trump. Three arms."

I mean, handshakes aren't important—we've established that. But then this isn't a handshake; it's essentially the movement of a dog yanking a bone that is still attached to something heavy, only transposed onto the human arm of the most powerful man alive. If I can learn how to handshake—and, as we have established many, many times over, I am essentially an idiot; if adulthood still adhered to the "year" system of schools then I would be held many times back—then why can't Trump?

As Mashable points out, Trump has form for this: Beyond the "you have an arm and I want it" yank-and-pull method (often described as a "power play" by psychologists), he also did this zany shit in the first series of The Apprentice:

And this just absolutely mad crap:

This all, of course, adheres to the wider theory that Trump is not a human, but rather a BP Richfield-shaped robot designed during WWII by the bad guys. The robot, in its age, is malfunctioning: The human tics and intricacies that made it "pass" for so long are starting to wear. I know I just made this up, but I think it has legs—Trump's body definitely is the size and has the box-like shape to contain robotic parts and engines instead of organs; the hair definitely looks like something someone found in one of those "walled up room that hasn't been touched since 1945" things that happen sometimes. Also, the fascism. If a subreddit could take the rest of the work on this one and incontrovertibly prove it, then I really would appreciate the help.

Anyway, to recap: The president of the United States cannot neatly execute the same simple human function that you perform when you agree an overdraft extension with the bank, or thank the bossman for extra chips, or greet literally any human male in the bar of their choosing. Does that fill you with a small dark feeling of dread? That fills me with a small dark feeling of dread. Here's to the next four years.

RELATED READING: [wikiHow – How to Shake Hands]

Follow Joel Golby on Twitter.


*This is a lie, actually. To get to my college girlfriend's parent's house from the bus stop, I had to walk through a small park—damp black tarmac pathway, edges crumbling into the grass, that sort of thing—and on this pathway, there was various half-assed graffiti sprayed. I say "half-assed" because nobody sprays graffiti on the ground until they are really on the dregs of their aerosol can, do they? You don't waste the first sprays by writing your name on the ground. It's a waste. So I'm walking along this path, lumbering a big adidas bag full of T-shirts and appallingly fitting jeans, and a small child makes a show of hopping off a swing, sprinting around the playground through the gate, and then up to me. I mean this kid is like seven. He has the flint eyes and shaven head of a particularly bleak Kez extra.

He holds one gnarled, scabbed finger up to me. And then he says, in the broadest Dudley accent possible—the most absurd of all the accents—he says: "YOW'M GAY. YOW FUCK THE FLOOR WHERE IT SAYS IAN." And, lo and behold, I looked down at the path, and there it was: the word "Ian," sprayed in thin yellow streaks. I am so gay, this boy is saying—so wildly, wildly gay—that even seeing a man's name—on the floor!—moves me to fuck it. I am so gay, this boy intimates, I have transcended gayness and come to a point where I can fuck concrete. Anyway, that's the most complicated bodying I've ever been subjected to. Wonder what that kid's up to now?

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