6. Be left hanging.


Friday night is finally here. You’re with your pals, having a grand old time. The beer and Tostitos Queso dip are flowing like wine. Everyone’s crowded around the television, watching the Super Bowl or the Academy Awards or the ever-popular Antiques Roadshow. It’s a perfect evening!
Suddenly, it happens. You can almost feel it coming. There’s a crackle of electricity, a shift in the breeze, a faint smell upon the air. You should probably get that gas leak fixed. But that’s not important now. What’s important is that Something Amazing is about to occur.

And there it is! “Touchdown!” you yell, or “I told you Tilda Swinton would win Best Supporting Actress!” or “That’s one hell of a mahogany armoire!” The room goes wild. Cheers are chanted. Hats are thrown. Pants are removed. You’ve entered a realm of utter chaos, and only one thing will bring it back to anything approaching a semblance of normalcy. It’s time to express yourself through the magic of the sacred High Five.

You turn to your buddy, extend your hand into the heavens, and wait.

And wait.

Time abruptly stops. The party comes to a crashing halt. Tostitos are frozen in mid-air. Were there music playing, now would be the time for your standard awkward-moment-record-scratch. All eyes are on you, except of course for the pair that you most covet: that of the intended recipient of the best and most intense high five you’ve ever prepared. Unfortunately for you and your self-worth, he’s more interested in the funbags that just walked through the door, and, to a lesser extent, the girl that’s attached to them. Either way, his attention no longer belongs to you. And no one feels the piercing pain of this slight more than your cold, lonely, clammy hand.

Sure, you try to salvage your dignity. Your hand immediately, almost instinctively shoves its way into your hair, attempting the old “I was just smoothing my coif” trick. As if displaying your palm to the entire room is something that everyone does before attending to their tresses. Or you change your motive, using your outstretched arm to now wave to someone across the room as if they’ve just arrived, even though they’ve been here since the beginning and you yourself even greeted them at the door and talked to them for no less than an hour about how consistently punctual they always are.

Or, fully accepting that your dignity has left the building and probably fled the country as well, you make no attempt to fix this irreparable situation. You keep your hand high in the air, stoutly resolute, staring down anyone who dares to point and laugh. This will not keep them from doing so, but this is okay with you, as they may in turn attract your friend’s attention quickly enough for him to turn around and end your suffering. You might even try to hurry it along yourself, with a curt “yo” or “dude” or, as a truly last ditch effort, “Up high, BRO!” Though more than likely you will just continue to hang there, forever, until someone quietly points out that you’re starting to resemble a Nazi.

So if you want to suck, be left hanging. It’s technically not your fault, but you knew the risks when you stuck your meaty paw all the way there in the first place. You should have known better.


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