They reached for my hand and I wanted to get away

DEAR MISS MANNERS: Before the pandemic, I never avoided shaking hands. But now, even though I’m fully vaccinated, I shudder at the thought.

Last week, I attended a student career fair where everyone wore masks. It was the first one I attended in a year and a half.

I did not even think of handshakes until the students started coming up to me with outstretched hands. I couldn’t help but reciprocate and grabbed their sometimes damp, limp hands to get a quick pump or two. My brain screamed “no!” while my social reflexes took over.

Two days later I came down with a runny nose and sore throat. Fortunately, after getting a negative COVID test, it was clear that I only had a cold.


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