第四十四篇 Americans Get Touchy1
The New York Times recently reported that American teens are hugging practically everyone they see. Say goodbye to the greetings of the past, from the hands-off "What's up!" to the handshake or high-five2. For young people across the country, hugging is the new "Hello".
Girls are hugging girls. Boys are hugging boys. Girls and boys are hugging each other. And, like every major trend, there are lots of variations on the form. There's the classic, full-body, arms-around-the-person bear hug, the casual one-armed side hug, the group hug and the hug from behind. There's the handshake that turns into a hug and the hug that turns into a pat on the back.
As trends go, this one seems pretty innocent. But some parents, teachers and school administrators are worried nonetheless. Will young people who aren't as comfortable with physical contact feel peer pressured into hugging? Willkids who don't receive hugs feel left Out3? Could an extra-long hug slide into the more ominous territory of sexual harassment?
In response to some of these concerns, some schools have set up new rules to limit or eliminate hugging. One school head has created a three-second limitation4 for hugs at her school. A few schools have taken even more drastic measures, placing a ban on all forms of touching between students.
A few important points are being left out of the discussion. While the US has traditionally been reserved about touching - saving hugs and kisses for relatives, romantic partners and very close friends - people in many other parts of the world have been greeting each other this way for ages.
In Latin America or Western Europe, in countries like Spain, France, and Italy, a kiss on the cheek is common among women, as well as among women and men who are not romantically involved. The cheek-kiss varies by region.
Sometimes it is just an air kiss blown past the face. In other places, the proper way of greeting is to deliver a kiss upon both cheeks, or sometimes even a triplet of kisses performed by kissing one cheek, then the other, then back to the first.
Latin American men are more likely to shake hands when greeting other men,but in some countries like Turkey, it's not unusual for men who know each other well to exchange kisses on the cheek. Meanwhile, for the Maori people of New Zealand, a traditional greeting called the "hongi" involves pressing nosestogether.
So, from a global perspective, the new trend of teen hugging in America is not so "new" after all. People all around the world move in close to say hello,and Americans are just now joining in.
touchy adj. 易怒的;敏感的
harassment n. 骚扰
triplet n. 三个一组;三件一套
1. touchy 的本意为“易怒的”、“敏感的”，这里用来指“喜欢肢体接触的”，标题意味美
的击掌”，有时也写成“Give me five”。
3. feel left out：感到被排斥
4. three-second limitation：指学校制定的将拥抱限制在三秒钟之内的规定。
5. Maori people：毛利人(新西兰的土著)。
1. The word "practically" in the first paragraph could be best replaced by