Michael, re shaking hands : agreed, handshakes can be pissing contests, but would you as readily accept such more interpretable power plays from your peers/seniors in the dojo?
John, I can fully understand your wish to show respect in the manner you describe, but I still find it hubris to expect total beginners who don't even know the art, never mind the man behind it to understand what you're doing. Instead, you're introducing ritualistic respect to a picture by making it an integral part of your normal practice. Also I question why people feel the need to make such sincere personal respect such a public occurance.
I find most ritual gets in the way of any "truths" or respect the ritual is meant to promote. I prefer dojos to concentrate on easily recognisable signals to promote safety, if this includes bowing, I'll happily follow.
Hanna, I always knew there was something evil about shomen, such an irritatingly useless empty hand attack could only be a conspiracy.