In many countries, a kiss on the cheek is a polite way to greet a friend or colleague. But to the Germans, specifically etiquette watchdog group the Knigge Society, cheek-kissing in the workplace is a no-no. Way Too Many Married Couples Kiss Less Than Once A Week
"We have to protect people who don't want to be kissed," Hans-Michael Klein, the chairman of the society, told the BBC. The practice, he says, creates discomfort for many Germans, who are used to just shaking hands. Klein says he's received over 50 emails complaining about workplace kissing. "[The custom] has come from places like Italy, France and South America, and belongs in a specific cultural context. We don't like it, they say."
However, cheek kissing can't actually be outlawed, so the watchdog group is suggesting for people who don't mind workplace kissing to "announce it with a little paper message placed on their desk," says Klein. ONE DAY Movie Contest: Tell A Love Story, Win Free Flicks & More
The BBC reports that the Knigge Society, named after a German guide to good manners, carried out a survey of people's opinions on the matter both on the street and during their seminars. According to Klein, they found that: "Most people said they didn't like it. They feel there is somehow an erotic aspect to it—a form of body contact which can be used by men to get close to a woman." Klein notes that Europe has a "social distance zone" of 23 inches (60 cm, if you will) which should be observed. 15 Best And Worst Careers For Love
The Knigge Society, which is headquartered in a castle in western Germany (whaaa? awesome), has previously ruled on such matters as "the correct way to end a relationship via text message and how to deal with a runny nose in public." Hold up. There's a correct way to end a relationship via text message? Isn't that always the wrong way to end a relationship? Knigge Group folks, we would like to hold a love-etiquette seminar with you. Preferably in your huge castle. You pay the airfare. Because it's, uh, polite.
Does being greeted with a kiss on the cheek make you uncomfortable? Do you think kissing is necessarily erotic?
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