Oh our social interactions are in state of such flux aren’t they. We were apart from one another for a couple of months at the beginning of and now we are starting to interact together in the flesh. But how are we to do it?
This all meshes in with the varying degrees of sensitivity there are among us to the present exceptional circumstances of the coronavirus outbreak.
- Some are very wary as they are vulnerable on health grounds
- Some are very wary because they are frightened of getting the virus.
- Some are very wary and get angry with those who are not as wary as themselves.
- Some are careful because the government still gives that message.
- Some are unbothered about themselves, but thoughtful not to be too lax because of others.
- Some are completely carefree, but respect others
- Some are carefree and mock others who are not so.
So in this situation as at June 18th how do we greet people? This is a perplexity. If someone is in the carefree category and happy to shake hands or hug how do they know that you are a wary one? Their attempting a handshake could be at best socially awkward and at worst offensive.
I have to confess amidst all this I completely, without thinking, ended up shaking someone’s hand on Tuesday.
Watching the footballers last night it seems that fist bumps and elbow rubs seems to be de rigeur.
I feel that carrying a sign around with me may well be best to declare what I want in terms of greeting. So, through this, you will know what I am happy with. I am not sure how people would react to that though.
So given what the footballers did last night I will say, all things considered, that I am happy with a fist bump. But if you are not then that is no problem.
This issue is set to be a big one in our social interactions over the next few months and although it has its humorous side it also has the potential to cause much offence. As Christians we need to be very sensitive to each other in all this and certainly not be mocking each other.