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Bringin’ back the high five

Kessler and ... | Sunday, September 9, 2007

Recently, a certain techno/hip-hop beat master deluxe god of pop boldly stated, “I’m bringin’ sexy back. (WHAT!?)” Not to downplay the roof-raising hotness of this jam, but was there ever a point in time when sexiness was uncool? Were teens ever ridiculed at school for calling a scorchin’ hot babe sexy? Was oogling the lingerie mannequins at Victoria’s Secret ever on the same level as entering a Magic: The Gathering tournament at Games By James? Of course not. Being sexy has always been cool. Unfortunately, not everything has the staying power of sexy; some things have to be “brought back.” There is one thing in particular that needs to be Timberlaked if we want to make the 2007-08 school year the sexiest ever … the high five.

After a few long years in the spotlight, the fist pound has run its course. We all have some fond pounding memories, maybe after a big game, a sweet joke, or perhaps even a discrete pound when you saw something cool. People like the pound. You have the exploding pound, people locking their pounds, or a few other pound variations. But where do you go from there? The high five has infinite variations. We have the high five, the low five, the back and forth five, the up-high/down-low combo five, the high five that is caught on the flip side, the super low b-ball intro five, the behind-the-back five, the over-the-shoulder five, the between-the-legs five, the Ninja Turtles group high five, the air five, the “skin it” five and the jump high five … just to name a few. If the situation calls for it, you can even unleash a massive body five, more commonly known as the chest bump. This type of versatility is just not available with the pound. The high five is a superior hand motion celebration, and it’s time to bring it back.

The success of the high five revival depends upon strict adherence to a simple cardinal rule. A high level of confidence must be established. Nothing is more demoralizing to a potential high fiver than the infamous pull away. Such an act could be a career ending experience to an up-and-coming high fiver, leading them to return to the way of the pound. Pulling back a high five after it has been offered is completely forbidden.

On a lighter note, high fives are contagious. The only thing even remotely comparable to the high five fever is the feeling you get on Thursday nights at Michiana’s number one bar-slash-dance club. Often times, a single high five with a single partner can leave a person feeling unsatisfied and wanting more, like only getting two tortillas on Fajita Friday. Since one high five is not nearly enough, usually a raucous high five “session” will ensue. These sessions consists of any willing participants in an area offering up high fives and everyone else slapping any open hand. Imagine that peace thing at Mass, where you don’t just go for the hot chick sitting near you but instead everyone in the area. Then replace handshakes with nasty hand slaps, multiply it by 10, and you have a good idea of what a high five session is all about. During a successful high five session, no hand goes unslapped and even stolen offers are not removed until the intended recipient gives you some skin. After a great high five bonanza, everyone can go back seamlessly to enjoying the situation that ignited such a celebration of hands. It is possible to have a pound session with knuckles flying all over the room, but anyone who has seen one happen can attest that it looks more like a fight than a celebration.

Even though sexy is here to stay, the high five needs to be reintroduced, and in a big way. So next time you get your cup filled even though you don’t know anyone at the party, throw up a five. When you get two crepes in that long line give the Dining Hall workers some skin. Most importantly, if you see a solitary five offered up, slap that hand and offer two more, expand the finger fiesta into an all out high five party because … we’re bringing it back.

Kessler and … is a non-profit pharmaceutical organization in search of a curefor male pattern baldness. Pat Canna, Fritz Shadley, Rick Loesing and Bill Ehrlich contributed to this column. They can be contacted at kesslerand@gmail.com

The views expressed in this column are those of the authors and not necessarily those of The Observer.