Dap Etiquette

The dap: not only an exchange of pathogens, but an exchange of respect.

When I see him, a smile slowly spreads on my face. I loosen up my arm to prepare for the inevitable, anticipating the touch of brotherly love. Our eyes lock, glimmering like the starry night sky, excited to be connected. As we walk closer to one another, we understand what will take place; we mentally prepare to “dap it up.” I lose consciousness and muscle memory takes over. Our hands clasp together. We experience a slight clench between wrists: casual yet firm. No need for force, just precision and accuracy. In this moment, the friction between our hands generates electricity that causes sparks to fly. Perfect symmetry. Harmony.

Beginning on September 3, 2019 and ending on October 21, 2022, we conducted, wrote, and defended a dissertation on the perfect dap. We hope to spread this melodic experience to the B-CC community. Our findings are summarized in this article.

Attention and awareness. It is imperative that when there is even the slimmest of chances for dap (i.e. walking in the school hallways), you are aware of your surroundings to ensure the smoothest execution possible.
Hygiene. Make sure your hands are clean and unoccupied. Do not dap me up with your greasy Old Bay-seasoned fingers.

Identify the subject of interest. Make brief eye contact, before offering a head nod or a “what’s up” to open the gateway for the dap.
Initiate the clasp. Slightly cup your hand for the satisfying thunderclap on impact that we all desire. Maintain firmness. Precision is key here.
Using your fingers, slide off of the subject’s hand while still maintaining contact.
Bend your fingers as if you are showing off your fresh manicure. This part of the dap should be free-flowing and smooth. Relax. Let go.

When seeing your friends in the hallway, it is never enough to merely say hi. Sharing words is the bare minimum; true respect is demonstrated by contact. The dap: not only an exchange of pathogens, but an exchange of respect.