‘What’s Wrong With Guys Hugging Hello?’ — Tiki Barber’s Take
Former NFL star Tiki Barber is here to give some advice on just about anything men want to know. This week, Tiki takes on “bro hugs”, tipping, guy’s weekends and ideas to kill some time.
"Hey Tiki! It feels like more men are trying to hug as hello or goodbye these days. I'm just not into hugging. How do I stop this from happening?" -- Harry, 39, Maryland
I'm definitely a hugger, especially if I've had more than a fleeting chat with someone. If I share a laugh with you during a conversation, then I feel connected enough to give a "bro-hug" post-colloquy.
That said, I understand your angst, and would suggest the advice of every father to his growing son: Upon greeting or departing, stand up tall (don't lean in); extend an exaggeratedly open right hand, making sure that your forearm, bicep and triceps are muscularly engaged - so that if your greeter starts to advance, he/she feels the resistance in your arm; and speak first, succinctly and definitively - "It is (or it was) a pleasure to meet/talk with you."
That should do the trick.
"Hey Tiki, I'm in my thirties, married and have two kids. I don't get to see my friends as much anymore and one of them suggested a guy's weekend. My wife thinks "grown men don't go on vacation together" and doesn't want me to go. It's just a bunch of guys hanging out on a weekend. Why is she making it such a big deal?" -- Chris, 36, Ohio
I feel you on this question. It comes up often with my friends, as well. First to tackle the question: I think the big deal to your wife is that she also has two kids and would love to take a timeout to go away for a weekend with you. So by suggesting a guys’ weekend without some consideration for her could make her feel not as important as your friends. I would suggest planning something spontaneous for you and her to do together. Have your parents or hers (or some other trusted sitter) come watch the kids, and go away for a night or two. It doesn't matter what it is, you just have to plan something to show that you care. Then you can suggest a guys’ weekend, and she will know that even though you are hanging with your boys that you also enjoy hanging out with her.
By the way, grown men do go away on vacation, and play softball, and drink beer and sing karaoke...together. Every person needs "their" time to do the things they love, otherwise, life gets stifling.
"Dear Tiki, I need a hobby. Just to kill time at night instead of mindless surfing the web and watching terrible TV. Any suggestions?" -- Grady, 27, Ontario
I've gotten obsessed with Words with Friends - the beauty of Facebook, and Zynga, is that it allows you to connect with your current and long lost friends and passively catch up and interact. It has taken an timeless pastime, i.e. board games, and put it in a digital space that extends across time zones and continents.
Another great one, if you like sports, is starting a fantasy league with your friends or joining one online. At first, it will seem tedious, but over time you will become obsessed. Over 35 million Americans play fantasy sports, and I'm sure much to the chagrin of their spouses and bosses, spend hours learning who's who in professional leagues.
How about a career development idea? Try Rosetta Stone! We are one of the few countries where a majority of our population does not know a second language.
"Am I supposed to tip the car service people who bring food to my car at chain restaurants? How do I know if they had any hand whatsoever in making my meal? Thanks Tiki" - Tom, 47, New Jersey
Yes, you should. They are technically "waiting" on you, so they deserve and expect a tip. Don't go crazy though and try to think percentage of sale. Tip them like a bell hop, a couple of bucks - unless of course the cute Macaroni Grill girl gives you a free flatbread, then you can write your number on the $10 spot!
Got a question for Tiki Barber? Send it to chris [@] guyspeed [dot] com.