Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Handshake Replacement

Variations that signal relationship intent.
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Rather than shaking hands to show friendly intent, supposedly based on proving you don't have a weapon, we address the more likely issue that one of the greeting parties may have germs on their hands that could spread infection.

A better approach would be to have two parties signal friendly intent without touching each other. There could also be different messages.

1- Fist in open palm raised to chest level: strong but friendly.

2- Clasped hands touching palms: good teamwork, either having been achieved or being planned.

3- Palms together in prayer with head bow, as is common in many cultures: thank you.

I can't see a single problem with all the cultures of the world agreeing to make this change. It's absolutely no big deal.

Either these or something else. It's time.

doctorremulac3, Mar 27 2020

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       What's wrong with gloves, or a disposable condom on your hand?
Skewed, Mar 27 2020
  

       That would require gloves or disposable condoms on your hands.
doctorremulac3, Mar 27 2020
  

       Unless they have just washed their hands with a germicidal soap, humans always have lots of infectious organisms on their hands, and even after washing some always remain - hence sterile surgical gloves.   

       Nothing has changed, hence no change is needed. The current panic is a result of faulty perception and lack of critical thinking, rather than the pathogen. Infection rates are already extremely high in the general population and will soon peak; it will then remain in circulation indefinitely. Like Restonviruses, there are biological reservoirs ensuring continuity. Of the infected, only a tiny proportion will become seriously ill, and of those, few will die - almost invariably those with pre-existing vulnerability.   

       Do people change their behaviour significantly during a normal cold or flu season ? No. Is this any different from a normal cold or flu season ? No.   

       Keep Calm and Carry On ...
8th of 7, Mar 27 2020
  

       Everyone could carry a prosthetic hand on a stick. When a handshake is required, you could shake their prosthetic hand with yours, thus simultaneously shaking hands, avoiding physical contact, and keeping 2 meters distance between you.
pocmloc, Mar 27 2020
  

       Or you could just lop a hand and forearm off one of the innumerable corpses littering the streets ... oh, wait, there aren't any ...   

       Why is that, then ?
8th of 7, Mar 27 2020
  

       What gesture would an extraterrestrial meeting need? If you wanted to go universal. Pop a smug Bond villain, touching arched fingers, action?
wjt, Mar 28 2020
  

       Gives [pocmloc] a *very* high five.   

       I'll be taking the greeting of a desert Fremen from Dune and will be throwing a handful of sand in the air whenever I see someone in the distance. I will need to carry a small bag of sand wherever I go but I think that it's a small price to pay. I will *not* however take up spitting as a mark of respect.
st3f, Mar 28 2020
  

       // What gesture would an extraterrestrial meeting need? //   

       You can be sure that when any other extraterrestrial species approaches humans, they will be fully briefed not only on all cultural norms of all nations, but on all the memes too, and will most likely open the exchange with either "Nano nano !" or "Shorter than we thought, you are, mmmm yes".   

       If you're lucky and they decide not to take the piss (unlikely) you'll get "Live long, and prosper".   

       Look, you've been sitting there blasting modulated RF out into space for over a century ... did you really think no-one would notice ? Care, no. Notice, yes. Laugh ? Lots ... there are life-forms that live in the ammonia oceans of gas-giants orbiting binary stars that had no concept of, or words for, "laugh", "funny" or "comedy"* until we added EarthTV to their channel bundle...   

       *Eerily, their name for their species, translated and then rendered phonetically, comes out as "Djirr-Minz" ...
8th of 7, Mar 28 2020
  

       [Skewed], are there permanent ones? Condoms I mean.
blissmiss, Mar 28 2020
  

       [Skewed] ! Don't you DARE answer that !
8th of 7, Mar 28 2020
  
      
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