A few weeks ag o, the economist Tyler Cowen attended a meeting in Manhattan during which Bill Gates briefed him and a small group of other guests on his latest philanthropic endeavors. Cowen was impressed. But one thing that impressed him in particular, as he later wrote on his popular blog, Marginal Revolution, was that Gates had been “smart enough, and health-savvy enough” to begin his presentation without first shaking everyone’s hand.
“He could spend his whole life shaking people’s hands, and basically be sick all the time,” Cowen said later, adding, “I shake hands with people, but I wish the whole custom didn’t exist. I’d rather bow or just pass business cards or something.”