Happy Holidays – Don’t Touch Me

Some people are huggers, some are double-cheek-kissers, some are kissers and huggers combined, and some, such as myself, simply prefer a handshake or nothing at all.  I am strictly referring to coworkers and business relations here.  In what world would I ever allow the accountant with halitosis to come within one foot of me let alone share a friendly embrace which may involve his lips touching my cheek skin?  It is simply unfathomable to me.  In what world would I feel inclined to allow any of the men, or women for that matter, that I work with enter my personal space in this way?  It is unprofessional and awkward if you ask me.

These issues don’t come up on a daily basis of course.  I would be filing a suit with Human Resources if that were the case.  However, during holiday parties and events away from the office, my coworkers always seem to want a piece of me.  I’m not being conceited or implying that these are in any way shape or form sexual advances.  I simply don’t want to touch these people or have them touching me.  They are my coworkers, not my best friends and certainly not my family.  That is also not to say that there is anything wrong with the majority of the people that I work with.  They are all good people, with families and friends of their own.  I respect them and enjoy working with them; I just don’t care to get physical with any of them.

Having said all that, I haven’t been able to get around my issue.  How do you deny somebody when they are coming in for a smooch or a hug without coming off as completely rude?  It’s nearly impossible.  Even sticking my hand out for a shake always somehow seems to get twisted into a hug with our hands now stuck between our midsections, sometimes amounting to a ‘body shake’ (see the movie Just Friends for a great example).  It’s not that I have a phobia in which I don’t want other people’s germs spreading to me.  I just like to reserve my affection for those whom I feel affectionately towards.  I know I sound like a monster but I wouldn’t have this problem if it weren’t for the huggers and kissers of the world.  I think that they should keep their lips and hips to themselves unless it is clear that they are welcome with open arms.

I’ve left out the gropers and accidental boob grazers on purpose, that’s a whole other rant.

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