To Shake Or Not To Shake

After about three weeks of applying just about any and every where, my motto kinda being ‘will work for anything morally sound,’ a got a call back! The Oxford Learning Center FINALLY sent me an email, and I went for my interview!!

So, as is usual in Canada, I was faced with a dilemma: To Shake Or Not To Shake. That is the question. Do I refuse to shake hands, stand by my moral and religious principles and risk losing a job? Or do I shake hands, land the job and avoid my spineless self in the mirror for the next two weeks? I don’t shake, in general, but I’ve caved a few times: i.e walking the stage during grade 12. This may sound stupid and pointless to some, but today? Today it was tough.

Because while I was waiting in the foyer, I was engrossed in a conversation with My Material and My Moral half, a la Gollum. 

Material Me: Remember that guy in Britain? He lost his job
Moral Me: But do we really want a job where they don’t respect us?
Material Me: Correction: do we really want a job. Period. No one else called, idiot. There is no other job.
Moral Me: But…
Material Me: Besides, it’s only a handshake. People here don’t read too much into it….
Moral Me: And this is only a piece of material, is that what you’re telling me?
Material Me:  No Subway…
Moral Me: Noo…
Material Me: No Edo… 
Moral Me: No! Not Edo!
Material Me: No cute DKNY shoes…
Moral Me: K, you’re the one that wanted those, not me.
Material Me: My precious!
Moral Me: Focus, idiot. To Shake Or Not To Shake, remember? Moral dilemma in T minus 5 mintues.
Material Me:  Easy. Shake.
Moral Me: But there’s that hadeeth….
Material Me: Oh. Em. Gee. Not the hadeeth. I beg…
Moral Me: He who pleases people instead of God…
Material Me: blah blah blah… 
Moral Me: God will be displeased with him and make others displeased with him. But he – or she – who pleases God will be pleased with him, and make others pleased with him. Hence,
Material Me: Who on earth says hence these days? See that is why we don’t have a job… or life… and why we blog about things like this… I hate you. I wish my other half was My Party-Animal half.
Moral Me: *talking louder… in my head* If I don’t shake God will be pleased with me, and make this guy pleased with me, which means hellooooo Subway!
Material Me:  I bet you a Subway sandwich we’re screwed.

So after about 15 minutes of deep, intellectual conversation with none other than myself, I walk in and oddly enough, he doesn’t extend his hand. Half way into the conversation I mention that I volunteer at the mosque and will be giving a kinda speechy thing there, and go on to explain what a mosque is. 

His response? “Don’t worry. I know. I’m Muslim.” *smile*

Yay!!! So I didn’t shake, I got the job, AND I think I got the hasnat because I’d already decided not to shake.  So life is pretty darn gooooooood today!

And my material half owes me a Subway sandwich. *evil laugh* take THAT.



Filed under Canada, Humor, islam, Islamophobia

17 responses to “To Shake Or Not To Shake

  1. ma shaa Allah!


    Im so happy for u and more happy u decided in the way u did 🙂 Allah will always bless u when u choose the right path and do the right thing for His sake..

  2. A job, hasnat AND a Subway! You’re on a roll! Get a cookie too!

  3. Mabrook! Lovely development! So what is your favorite Subway sandwich?

    I would put a damper on the “shake-no shake” dilemma by suggesting that your interviewer could have more likely not been a Muslim, and that you would have slienated yourself from getting that job by not shaking hands. It’s definitely a moral dilemma, one that might be decided differently, and appropriately, in other circumstances, and Allah knows best.

    • Allah ye barek feeki!! And it’s the sweet onion chicken teriyaki. Hands down. Yummmm

      Regarding the threat of alienation, I know exactly what you mean. I really do worry about it, but somehow I just don’t feel right about doing it. My reasoning is that I don’t force people to conform by my standards and so I shouldn’t be forced to conform by others’ standards. Because I chose to act like this, then my choice should be respected, right?

      And a part of me worries that if I give this up, I may just end up sliding right down that slippery slope. It’s kind of my way of asserting myself, and who I am: this is me, I’m Muslim, I’m Canadian, and I’m here to stay!!


  4. Ooh, Masha’Allah that’s a VERY inspiring story!!!

    See, Allah rewarded you already. Goes to show we don’t know what good things are in store for us; if only we stand firm!

  5. Ayesha

    Good job, girl! Alhamdulillah that worked out great

    ps. a lot of people don’t know this, but it’s supposed to be the WOMAN who extends her hand first for a handshake 😉 It’s amazing how only a few people know that!

    • Ohh.. interesting! I never knew that! How come so many guys stick it out then?? Lol, then I can use their breach of etiquette as the reason I refuse to shake! You never know…

      • Ayesha

        I know! But that’s exactly what my mom does whenever she has business meetings with mans, LOL. “HEY! YOU ARE SO RUDE. DONCHU KNOW IT’S THE WOMAN WHO’S SUPPOSED TO OFFER HER HAND!?”

  6. Congrats! Enjoy that sub! 🙂

  7. congrats on the job!

  8. Beautifully amazing and sweet 😀
    Baraka Allahu feeki!

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