The Fist-Bump Is Dead

I don’t remember what exactly killed the high-five, but it didn’t die gracefully, that’s for sure.

In fact, I think the high-five suffered mightily. In its waning years of popularity, everyone high-fived each other. Politicians high-fived their constituents. Salesmen high-fived their customers. Principals, teachers and counselors gave high-fives. Instead of being the standard greeting or congratulatory gesture of the young, it was adopted by everyone, including our parents and other authority figures. And just like that, it became uncool to high-five.

Thankfully, a successor came along. The Fist-Bump gave us all hope. It was actually more subtle and understated than a high-five, since it didn’t require a protracted arm extension and audible hand-slapping. This of course, made it cooler. Plus, the fist-bump utilized a fist instead of an open hand. Again, cooler.

Eventually, the fist-bump even became a litmus test to detect who was “with it.” When someone stuck their hand up anticipating a high-five, maybe you gave them one, but you always looked over your shoulder to make sure nobody else was watching you do it. After all, better to “leave someone hanging” than be seen doing the outdated high-five. Seriously, publicly performing a high-five became the coolness equivalent of wearing a D.A.R.E. t-shirt after elementary school.

Yes, at one time it seemed like the fist-bump would carry us well into the next millennium. But that is no longer the case. Sadly, I’m here to proclaim that the fist-bump is dead. And Howie Mandel killed it.

Maybe you know Howie Mandel. He’s the host of one of the worst TV shows ever created, which is really saying something. His show “Deal or No Deal” was the first game show that clearly required no discernible skill or intelligence whatsoever to play. Of course, “National Bingo Night” debuted last month on ABC and instantly lowered the game show intelligence bar even further.

Anyway, Howie Mandel adopted the fist-bump as his way to greet and congratulate contestants on the show. The only problem is, he isn’t doing the fist-bump to be hip. He’s doing it because he is “germaphobic,” and figures that a fist-bump will spread fewer germs than a handshake. All of this is true, by the way.

To recap, let’s review what the fist-bump has now become intertwined with:

1. It is showcased nightly on a moronic game show.
2. It is being popularized by Howie Mandel.
3. It is deemed a more sanitary alternative to the traditional handshake.

Seriously, how can the fist-bump possibly survive that triumvirate of lameness?

I don’t know, I hope the fist-bump isn’t completely dead. But, I think we are safe to assume it is on life support. Frankly, after watching what the high-five endured, I think we should just pull the plug and shed a tear. It’s the humane thing to do.

11 thoughts on “The Fist-Bump Is Dead”

  1. Stated earlier:
    “Sadly, I’m here to proclaim that the fist-bump is dead”

    Then later:
    “I don’t know, maybe the fist-bump isn’t completely dead”

    Howie Mandel is kinda weird, I agree. But let’s not give him credit that he killed the high-five. I think it sorta just went away. But I will also state that it’s possible that Borat brought it back.. ” Very Niice, High-Five Yeaa”

  2. In a way, I could care less. Unlike the high-five, I never grew too attached to the fist-bump (or “pound” as some refer to it). Sure, I did it. Everyone did. But we didn’t really do it with the same zeal, now did we.

    To me, there is cool and then there is “too cool.” I can’t tell you how many times I’ve made a completely uncool cheer or yell while playing sports and then high-fived someone. It didn’t matter how uncool I had just been, the high-five was there to save me.  Each and every time. Picture squeeling with delight and then having to get all cooled out and hit someone off with a fist-bump. It doesn’t work.

    That’s why the high five was priceless and I eagerly await it’s true successor. It was universal in moments of joy or exclamation amongst all. Rich or poor. Black or white. Old or young. I wouldn’t know how to interact with a toddler if it weren’t for the high five.

    Perhaps with soccer (along with its “no hands” culture) gaining popularity in the U.S. the “low-five” will make a stab at it.

  3. The post and the subject was funny. It was put together terrific. However, being in a leader position means being subject to criticism.

    I don’t normally comment on spelling as it is often incorrect. Punctuation is generally overlooked. Even smaller words that sound similar to the correct words are often overlooked. But definitions can’t be overlooked. Predecessor, by definition, is something that precedes another in time. So not only can one not “await a predecessor”, “a predecessor came along” (in reference to the fist bump) is also not possible because the high five came before the fist bump. I think the word that should be there is successor.
    I’m only pointing this out because the word “triumvirate” was included in the column. I’m fairly certain that the word was chosen prior to format of the paragraphs… Triumvirate. Honestly! I had to google it. I’ll be honest.

  4. They say the Internet is a wild, untamed frontier of information. Thankfully we have the Sheriff to bring forth some law and order.

    First off, you are correct, I definitely meant successor and for some reason, predecessor came out instead. Good catch. I’m going to change the post, but I’ll keep these comments intact as proof that I am not infallible.

    And as for “triumvirate”, that is one of my favorite words. I am officially adding it to the list of words I’m trying to teach my son…

  5. I didn’t mean to pick ya apart. I think what really prompted me was two people mis-using it, not just one.

    Triumvirate. Triumvirate. … I think I am going to say this word to someone and look at their eyes and watch for fear.

  6. High five…I don’t play that jive. That is a real qoute from a food network show on last night. Fate that I would read this article today.

  7. Sheriff, it’s not longer cool to hyphenate words, c’mon. What are you using, AP ’87? Odds are that you’re not a Wheel Watcher… which, might I add, has lost its luster decades ago. Great game, but isn’t anyone tired of looking at Sajak’s pumpkin head? Seriously. The next time that you tune in, compare ANY head with the Great Pat Pumpkin… has its own weather system…

    All right, handshakes and high fives. My theory is that Elaine (from Seinfeld) pretty much killed the high five. In defiance of Puddy’s obsession, she claimed that it was “very grease monkey,” and the world then turned to the fist-bump. Man, that show had pull. How did we go from Seinfeld to Deal or No Deal? Is NBC trying to target the South?

    I re-tire.

  8. Yea, i figure pointing out grammar will definitely come back and bite me in the bu-tt. To my amaze-ment i didn-t write disusing or anteusing.

    But, the sheriff, by definition, is above the law. So i reckon you have yourself a good day and not cause any more ….crap im going to spell this wrong….ruckus.

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