In January 2017, an image purportedly showing a highlighted passage from Donald Trump’s 1987 book The Art of the Deal was widely circulated online, a passage in which the business magnate supposedly described a power play strategy (dubbed the “no-wash” trick) involving not washing one’s hands after using the bathroom:
Another one of my personal favorite power plays is quite simple, but very effective: The “no-wash” trick. And this is really so easy, I’ve been doing it myself since the 3rd grade. Stop washing your hands. After going to the bathroom, don’t wash your hands. Think about it: Your handling your junk, you leave the men’s room, go back to your meeting and shake hands with people. They don’t know, but YOU know they’re basically touching your junk. And the leverage you feel after that kind of play could be the advantage that you need to land a big contract, or negotiate a lower settlement if a real estate deal goes kaputskies.
It’s also worth knowing that most of the poker ships in my casinos have touched my schlong at one time or anoth-
This image was typically shared with a claim that it appeared on page 78 of The Art of the deal:
Disgusting words from Donald Trump’s book, The Art of the Deal. Yes, he’s a perv by his own words.
Such a disgusting animal, germaphobe my a** just check page 78.
This passage does not appear anywhere in Donald Trump’s The Art of the Deal. We searched the text of that book for the phrase “‘no-wash’ trick,” as well as more colorful offerings such as “handling your junk” and “touched my schlong,” and came up empty-handed each time. Although pagination can differ in various electronic versions of books, the “trick” described by Trump on page 78 of the print edition of the The Art of the Deal was one he learned from rent collectors about not standing directly in front of doors when knocking on them:
Moreover, Trump said the opposite of what is claimed here in his 1997 book The Art of the Comeback, describing himself as a “clean hands freak” who washes his hands “as much as possible”:
One of the curses of American society is the simple act of shaking hands, and the more successful and famous one becomes the worse this terrible custom seems to get. I happen to be a clean hands freak. I feel much better after I thoroughly wash my hands, which I do as much as possible.