In an era where we are one SARS-Bird Flu-Spanish Influenza-H1N1 outbreak from the world devolving into roaming packs of zombies and no reliable 4G service anywhere, it appears the Bros are doing a small part to prevent that.
“How?” you may ask. Well, by giving knucks. DAP. Fist bumps. You know, physical expressions of congratulations that require a minimum of actual physical contact. Which is good because, according to The Atlantic, shaking hands is spreading pathogens like WOAH.
The handshake … is unsanitary. The handshake is outdated in most places, born of a time when we might all be expected to be concealing sabers. It would make more sense for us to casually intertwine almost any other part of our bodies with those of strangers, lips and genitals the notable exceptions.
Basically, cooties. You get cooties from shaking hands. And why wouldn't we, as a society, want to find a way to have less cooties? Well, a doctor at West Virginia University thinks he's found a way. ENTER THE FIST.
[Tom] McClellan's team [surgeons at WVU] had a small group of clean-handed research subjects shake and fist bump at various intervals. They then cultured the bacteria grown on their hands. The handshake exposed more than three times as much skin surface area as the fist bump, and the contact averaged 2.7 times longer. More bacteria were transmitted, as expected, with the handshake.
That's because, contrary to what you may believe, modern people are filthy slobs.
“Handwashing has become a major initiative throughout healthcare systems to reduce transmission rates,” [McClellan] wrote, “but as many as 80 percent of individuals retain some disease-causing bacteria after washing.” Almost no one washes their hands appropriately—you're supposed to scrub long enough to sing the alphabet song twice. Health professionals are usually somewhat better than average, but far from perfect.
Yea, fuck trying to handwash better. Lame. Instead, the next time someone extends you a hand, offer them a tap. Not only will you look cool, you'll be saving the fucking world (which we also consider cool).
[Fist bump via Shutterstock]