The hand that shook the hand…that shook the hand, (and other brushes with fame.)

Primitive customs, memories of skin cells and metaphysical degrees of separation collide when we consider the strange case of the man that shook the hand…that shook the hand.

I know dear friend, for I AM that man.

But don’t reach for your guns.  Not just yet anyway.


Most people collect stamps, coins, bottle tops, scalps, shrunken heads and rara avis’ of all sorts, and haul them around in albums, or wrapped in linen or in heavy sea chests; or sit on them like a vulture on a carcass or a dragon on its hoard, snuffling and fuming with acquisitive lust, torn by the desire to gloat and the need to conceal; some wear them around their waists or necks and dance around fires in clearings in the suburban jungle shaking them and laughing maniacally at the bloody moon, but I, gentle reader, I simply take my collection with me wherever I go and hold it in the palm of my hand.

Not being able to afford stamps, coins, shrunken whatsits etc I have built an impressive collection of second hand hand shakes.  Ideologically sound, ecologically sustainable, cheap and easy to maintain.

Here are some of the celebrities who have shaken hands with people whom I subsequently shook hands with.

Here for example is JFK, holding over his heart the hand that shook the hand that I shook.  Please don’t tell the Warren Commission of my involvement.


Here is Elvis, blowing into the hand that shook the hand that I shook whilst, strangely, a fellow who looks as if he may be a part pig part man hybrid experiment cuts his hair.


Here is a slightly scary Saint Mother Therese, looking a little like a Dick Tracey villain, the Holy Woman of Calcutta, India’s favourite Catholic.


Charles De Gaulle shaking a number of hands any one of which (I hear you thinking excitedly) may well be the hand I subsequently shook.


But it’s not ALL second hand friend, I myself have shaken the hand of the great Jimmy Webb, seen below with the award winning interpreters of one of his many hit tunes, The Fifth Dimension.  Jimmy (first name basis, Jimbo, the Jimster) is pictured holding his Emmy in the hand that I shook !  It makes me shake just thinking of it.  I’d like to thank my Mum and Dad and Wife and Daughter and Sisters without whom none of this would have been possible.


Allan Ginsberg


Fame seems to have followed my family, dogging our footsteps and, on one memorable occasion, stepping on our feet.  Yes, the great Duncan Renaldo ( better known as the Cisco Kid), pictured below with Leo Carrillo and the father of the guys from Devo once stood on my sister’s toe at a function at the Glenelg Town Hall.


Here’s Adventure !  Here’s Romance !

And last, but not least (unless you’re judging the relative qualities of the various Bonds from Connery through Craig, Niven and Moore), Australia’s own Bond, George Lazenby, once asked another sister of mine out…and she turned him down !  Perhaps the only woman in the world ever to resist the wiles of 007 ?

Here he is, snapped in a typically louche pose, perhaps even at the very instant when he was suggesting a milk shake and trip to the drive in to my sister ?




2 thoughts on “The hand that shook the hand…that shook the hand, (and other brushes with fame.)

  1. I was waiting for the lazenby reference, and sure enough it came along at last like the proverbial gunghalin to civic tram. Lazenby is theoretically my god uncle, once removed (and never replaced) as he used to go out with my brother’s god mother. We were talking famous meetings as we sat in the Bradman stand on Sunday watching Usman Khawaja knock up a ton against the diminutive Sri Lankan flannelled fools. Mike ran into Greg Chappell on the way in, which caused me to mention my meeting with Kevin sheedy in the vip lounge there, whereupon I said to him ‘I hated you when I was a kid’, and he quick as a flash replied ‘I hated myself’.


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