A SERIES of unfortunate events, marked out by two people’s inability to observe social cues correctly, has resulted in a horrific instance of a handshake transforming into a poorly orchestrated half hug, leaving every one involved visibly embarrassed.
Casual acquaintances Cormac Tilley and Declan O’Neill, who know each other because their girlfriends are friends, happened upon each other as O’Neill exited his local newsagents in Waterford City. Unsure as to the appropriate way to greet someone they’ve hung out with at the occasional party and pub session, both O’Neill and Tilley misread the other man’s body language, thus sparking an exchange onlookers labeled ‘desperate, easily the most cringe thing I’ve seen all year’.
“The taller lad saw your man coming out of the shop and was all ‘story boi!’ shouting loud, kinda laughing but I think ‘cus he was so enthusiastic the other lad thought ‘oh this is going to be one of those kinda handshake that locks thumbs and then you transition into a chest to chest contact and a pat on the back’, but it wasn’t at all, it was devastating to watch it unfold,” confirmed one distraught onlooker, who hated watching people try to be cool, relaxed and breezy but fail completely.
Tilley, the man who seemed the more enthusiastic of the two awkward handshake-hug-thingy has gone on record to reject claims he went ‘full on’ into a hug and was hampered by O’Neill, who wasn’t sure what way to approach the social situation.
“No that’s not what happened at all. Sure Declan is sound if a little awkward but it was just a straightforward fist bump and then an awkward laugh as we both stopped like we were going to chat but then we realised since we actually don’t know each other at all we had nothing to talk about. But there was no awkward hug, I reject those claims completely,” Tilley confirmed, going visibly red.
CCTV footage from outside the newsagents contradicts Tilley’s claims as there is a clear aborted handshake, followed by the men half-leaning into one another before Tilley slaps O’Neill on the back 4 times, which is one time too many according to experts.
O’Neill refused to comment when approached by WWN, with the implication being is was still haunted by the socially inept exchange and would be lying low until the mortification receded.