Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Watch What Goes Where

Fingers ahoy.

I know, it may be warm and sunny where you're going, even too warm, which is why you've brought your Utilikilt and decided to wear it.

Some may be surprised to know that in most countries of the world, Utilikilts are barely even noticed.

Hey, you ever traveled at all? They wear all kinds of kinky stuff over there, so why not you?

But what you may not know is that, despite being a handy-man type of guy not comfortable letting stuff be, you ought to crank it back a notch when abroad.

Take church, for instance.

People get sensitive about their religious institutions, and although it's probably OK to show up at "la catedral vieja" for mass in your Workman kilt, you really have to stifle the urge to repair wobbly doorknobs or sticky windows while there.

Definitely remain a respectful distance from the baptismal font at all times. Figure two or more paces as a rule of thumb.

Churchgoers like their stuff to look "lived-in".

You know. Squeaky hinges, tasteful amounts of peeling paint and like that. Faded.

If you get in there and noodle around with the wiring they may riot on you, and that's definitely going to be a bummer. So chill. The urge will pass.

Now, shaking hands. Not everybody does it. Customs vary.

As a general rule, if you need to pick your nose, have at it. Generally, using a pinkie is a bit classier than other fingers, except at the dinner table, where in some countries a butter knife is the way to go.

But if you're up there to the second joint, honking around, and then unexpectedly get introduced to the ambassador or whatnot, you're bound to cause some kind of kerfuffle with a bogey dangling from your finger.

Normally they won't say anything at the time, although you may be asked at gunpoint to step into an unmarked black car on your way out. Never a good sign.

Generally speaking, it's a terrible loss of what they call "face" to end up with another guy's nose turds on your hand, so think about it before engaging in grip mode if your hands have been busy on the hygiene front.

On your side, take it like a man. Smile, grab whatever is offered, shake it twice, and act like it happens every day. You can wash up later.

Well, that's about it for now.

Happy travels!

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