I was watching one of those old black and white monster movies from the 1950’s – a guilty pleasure of mine – over the weekend called The Giant Behemoth, a British film. It had the customary oversized radiation-infused monster on the loose in London, but what struck me was a bit of dialogue in a scene where the American scientist puts out his hand and the English scientist smiles and says, “oh yes, you chaps are great ones for shaking hands.”

We are a handshaking lot, I guess, and I say this from a male perspective. Besides the traditional man-to-man firm grip, there are quite a number of deviations that guys use. I was just getting used to the ubiquitous fist bump, although I never was well versed in some of the added extras, like the floppy hand flap immediately afterward.

Then there’s The Homie Shake, that looks like they’re going to arm wrestle (which is often followed by The Half Hug); the vertical Fist Tap, which can also be amplified by agreed upon finger/thumb gymnastics; The Chest Bump; The High Five; and the sportsmanlike Slap on the Derriere, which never to be performed off the playing field, I would think.

In general, handshakes to avoid – this goes for both women and men – are The Bone Crusher; The Dead Fish; The Lobster Claw; The Push-Me-Pull-You, The Sweaty Palms; and The Brush Off. One that particularly raises suspicion, however, is the two-handed Politician’s Handshake that I find suggestive of, “I’m your friend. Trust me.”

But hey, I learned a new one a couple weeks ago while I was at the Community Arts Party, one I’ve found is becoming widespread – as widespread as the danged flu virus, I surmise. Of course I’m talking about the Elbow Bump. I’ve tried it on a few people and we all had good laughs.

As a matter of fact, I was listening to a report on KANW that basically said the Elbow Bump is “your good friend” during the flu season. It quoted a physician who said, “80 percent of all cold, flu and upper respiratory infections and diarrheal illnesses” are passed from person to person by their hands. Shocking, I know, but the worse part is trying to keep your hands from touching your eyes or nose. I’m thinking the best option is to go walking around with one of those white cones recuperating dogs wear.

Full disclosure: the reason I spent watching old movies over the weekend was because I, apparently, did not Elbow Bump enough and I was waylaid in the bed woozy and wheezy and hackish and…well…other things…

I’m not sure it was the flu, but the one thing about being laid out and flat on your back with a congested head is that while you’re not fit for work or operating heavy equipment or anything else that requires anything resembling energy and thought processes, is that you can take in a lot of movies. And that I did. Two Gary Coopers and Fredric March, among others.

By the way, how does one kill the abovementioned radiation-infused giant lizard running amok in London? Simple, just shoot it with a torpedo packed with uranium so it will OD on radiation and self destruct. Make a note.

Anyway, the one thing I regret is missing out on Saturday night was the big hoop-de-do at Vertu Fine Arts Gallery. It their fifth anniversary and Georgette and Prescott Grey went all out, showcasing some of the finest artists in Socorro and beyond. There was a big crowd and although I couldn’t be there, it was live streaming on Facebook.

It made me think, for small towns like ours and the rest of the sparsely populated and rural Socorro County, there is a surprising number of artists. And not just artists, but very talented fine artists. It seems they have always gravitated to the vistas around here.

Besides old movies, I was watching a video over my Roku device last weekend. I can’t remember exactly who it was, but I know it was of those raucous singers du jour, and I’m not sure if the singer’s name was one or two syllables, or if it included a number. Speaking of music, I heard someone say pop music in the 1960s was pretty much about two things; love and dancing. Personally, I am not the dancing sort of person, but I learned about all the dances from Top 40 songs.

There were songs about the Frug, the Pony, the Swim, the Mashed Potatoes, the Bird, the Cool Jerk, the Twist and the Hully-Gully, which survives today when you see people noodling out there on the dance floor. There was also the Hand Jive, which made a comeback of sorts as the Macarena. But who needs the Macarena?

Now there’s the Elbow Bump!