darned spiral notebooks!
September 9, 2012 9:01 PM   Subscribe

 
Shooting a rifle. The shells get ejected IN YOUR FACE.
posted by dunkadunc at 9:04 PM on September 9, 2012 [32 favorites]


I never thought about that dunkaduc, that is rough. Do they have "Lefty" rifles?
posted by bswinburn at 9:08 PM on September 9, 2012


Driver's cup holder is for the right hand

Your car seems to be backwards.
posted by pompomtom at 9:08 PM on September 9, 2012 [18 favorites]


The university desk thing is giving me flashbacks. In the old physics building (now long gone) there were about a hundred of those tiny swing arm desks for righties - and four that had the desk on the left hand side. In all the long years I was a student I never got to use a left hand desk. You had to get there early enough to stake out two desks, put your bag and coat in in the one on the left to take notes, and use that desk's swing arm. I had to stake out two desks and defend them from all comers, or there was no note taking in that class.
posted by Kevin Street at 9:11 PM on September 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


They make the lefties fight with swords, I think.
posted by dunkadunc at 9:11 PM on September 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


I'm pretty sure there are rifles where you can set the ejector to either side. Not sure, but I've heard of such.
posted by Ghidorah at 9:12 PM on September 9, 2012


On the other hand, the QWERTY typewriter keyboard favors lefties who are typing English. (About 60% of normal English text is on the left side, including ETA, the three most common letters in English.)
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 9:13 PM on September 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


My quick thoughts as a leftie:

•I've been using notebooks starting at the back as long as I remember. Perhaps going to weekly Hebrew school and Shabbat services made it seem natural.

•The one item I've owned longer than anything else my entire life is my ball glove. I've had it all but the first eight years of my life.

•In college I became so acclimated to regular desks that I couldn't stand the left handed ones.

•I never knew lefties were bothered by mice and number pads on the right. It seems like complaining about there being high keys on the right side of a piano.
posted by sourwookie at 9:15 PM on September 9, 2012 [10 favorites]


All notebooks suck equally for everyone, if you write on both sides of the paper. Unless you're ambidextrous, that is.*

* If you ambidextrous, congratulations! You win at handedness.
posted by cosmic.osmo at 9:16 PM on September 9, 2012 [9 favorites]


One thing they don't mention on the list is doors. I never used to think about it, but it's most natural for me to open the right hand side door because I've usually got something in my left - and apparently a lot of right handers do the opposite. I nearly collided with people a few times when they started to walk through a door (from the other side) after I opened it. Guess they thought I was holding it open for them.
posted by Kevin Street at 9:18 PM on September 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


I taught myself how to be ambidextrous. Solved all of my problems, except when I write with my right hand, it looks like a 4-year-old wrote it, but whatever.

When I got my job a few years ago, the box cutters they gave us attached to the right side of your pants, so I would have to use it with my right hand, and I wound up slicing open one of my fingers on my left hand pretty bad. I eventually found out that the box cutter can be made left-handed if you pulled the part that attaches to your pants off and attach it to the other side, but I could never figure out how to do it without breaking it, so I gave up on that.
posted by Redfield at 9:18 PM on September 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


The kindle thing drives me nuts. I wish there was a setting to switch it - doesn't seem like it would be that difficult.

I have additional difficulty because I'm missing the thumb on my right hand (seriously, try not using it for an hour) so it's hard to even pick things up with it. Like cups - I have to reach across to get to the cup holder. Though I'm so used to it that I rarely spill.
posted by desjardins at 9:20 PM on September 9, 2012


The cups/ounces side is for the righties. You have to do that thing where you twist your hole arm around to be able to read ounces.

I guess lefties are forced to bypass a competent editor. Wait, no, that's just Buzzfeed.

Also numbers 6 and 17 are the same, right?
posted by item at 9:21 PM on September 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


Re three ring binders if they're your own notes can't you just write on the back of the paper?

Also I am right handed but I get ink all over my hand when I write with a pen too. Didn't know it was seen as a lefty specific problem.
posted by pravit at 9:22 PM on September 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


I switched the front/back brake levers on my bike, which fucks up anyone who tries to ride it. :)
posted by desjardins at 9:23 PM on September 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


As a rightie who recently started using the mouse left-handed for RSI reasons, it is way better to have the number pad opposite the mouse. It means my hand doesn't have to be nearly as far out to the side to use the mouse, which is a huge ergonomic improvement. I suppose it might be more of a pain to train your non- dominant hand to use the keypad, but since you already type with both hands, probably not much more.

Also, I wish page forward in my ereader was on the side of my non-dominant hand. That way I could use my ereader one handed and still have my dominant hand free for snacking.
posted by jacquilynne at 9:24 PM on September 9, 2012 [3 favorites]


What's with the 'Bonking elbows with a righty at the dinner table'? I don't understand this.
posted by unliteral at 9:24 PM on September 9, 2012


I used to have a fountain pen that had a special left-handed nib. That, along with fast-drying ink and my odd slanty handwriting and paper placement, made for some very, very pleasurable lefty writing. I really, really miss that pen. This list made me think about how many of my fussy preferences for writing tools -- avoiding ballpoints and pencils, never ever buying spiral-bound notebooks -- are actually a product of being left-handed, rather than having office-supply sensitivity sensors set to "high."
posted by heurtebise at 9:24 PM on September 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


Always wanted to start a band called The Right Handed Scissor Conspiracy. Fucking scissors get me every time.
posted by eyeballkid at 9:25 PM on September 9, 2012 [9 favorites]


I prefer the flip-top (or "reporter style") notebooks. Much easier to write on.
posted by Kevin Street at 9:25 PM on September 9, 2012 [4 favorites]


I never knew lefties were bothered by mice and number pads on the right. It seems like complaining about there being high keys on the right side of a piano.

Depends a lot on what you do for a living. Working with CAD is much more clicking and very fine mouse movements than anything else. My lefty wife developed early carpal tunnel problems by the end of her 20's due to this. She's since switched left handed mouse settings (and ambidextrous mice).

Unfortunately, it is nearly impossible to find a fully programmable left-handed or ambidextrous four button mouse. Everything seems to be left-handed, or programmable, but not both. (So if you know of a good one, memail me!)
posted by meinvt at 9:26 PM on September 9, 2012


What's with the 'Bonking elbows with a righty at the dinner table'? I don't understand this.

Wow, well, growing up with two lefty parents, and married to a lefty wife, I can assure you that in tight quarters like restaurants and big family dinners it is quite important that I sit to the right and the lefty sit to the left. Otherwise someone might get a fork through the cheek.
posted by meinvt at 9:27 PM on September 9, 2012 [6 favorites]


I've just given up and forced myself to use regular scissors, mice, can openers, card swipe machines (for your payment card or your transit pass), ATMs, and any situation where I can't be guaranteed an object that I can always use left-handed (like a pen). (Except for guitars. And of course the guitar store only ever has two left-handed guitars.)
posted by one more dead town's last parade at 9:28 PM on September 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


1. losing your left hand
posted by This, of course, alludes to you at 9:31 PM on September 9, 2012 [11 favorites]


If I were a lefty, I'd be very interested in seeing what people do in the Arabic world, where most people are righties but their script goes right to left. So undoubtedly they've been working on many of the writing-related problems for a while.
posted by Deathalicious at 9:35 PM on September 9, 2012 [4 favorites]


I really don't get the spiral notebook thing. Doesn't everyone use both side of the paper? If not, wouldn't lefties just use the "back" of the paper and skip the "front." And if it's in a spiral notebook, who cares if it's on the "wrong" side. This is something that has always confused me about lefty complaints.
posted by raccoon409 at 9:39 PM on September 9, 2012 [4 favorites]


Don't Arab countries consider the left hand unclean? Do they freak out if you use it for eating?
posted by desjardins at 9:39 PM on September 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


Muslim dining would be a bit of pain I guess.
posted by unliteral at 9:40 PM on September 9, 2012


Some of these are a bit silly. (Car coffee mugs? C'mon. Drinking is a pretty ambidextrous thing for me.) The pen/notebook stuff is right on; but when I first learned to use a mouse (and later a trackpad), in the mid-80s, I did it with my right hand, so I wouldn't have to switch when using work and other people's computers. Now it's second nature; I can do fairly fine movements (drawing automation curves in Logic or Ableton Live, lassoing something in PShop), and I'm otherwise quite left-handed. It feels strange to try to use a mouse or trackpad with my left hand.

I do try to avoid pen and pencil writing in favour of typing whenever possible, since I get cramps in my left hand if I have to take notes rapidly for an extended period. Would have been better to have been born Semitic or East Asian... (Which always struck me as odd, particularly the horizontal Hebrew and Arabic right-to-left scripts: presumably there's the same vast majority of right-handers in those cultures, yet it would seem that most of them must have to endure what we lefties do in writing Roman or Greek or Cyrillic scripts... How did that direction get established? When I studied Arabic for a year back in the 80s with a brilliant multi-lingual woman from Baghdad, it was a relief to finally be writing in a comfortable direction.)

I also learned guitar from age 8 onward the standard righty way, and on piano keyboards, my right hand is faster and more agile than my left (no doubt from the repertoire I learned as a kid.) Thumb-texting on the phone is still better lefty, though.

It would be nice to see some studies on relative motor-neuroplasticity of lefties and righties in learning new manual skills.
posted by Philofacts at 9:40 PM on September 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


All notebooks suck equally for everyone, if you write on both sides of the paper. Unless you're ambidextrous, that is.*

But the spiral ones that are called out in the list are actually the best because you can fold them over and just have a single page at a time (actually a necessity for the tiny desks also called out, which just plain suck for everyone, though somewhat less so for righties.)
posted by kagredon at 9:40 PM on September 9, 2012


I use the left hand page on spiral notebooks and in binders (or I *did*), but I do most other things left or right handedly, so no worries (except scissors, I can only use right handed ones).
posted by thylacinthine at 9:40 PM on September 9, 2012


Jinx
posted by unliteral at 9:40 PM on September 9, 2012


In many cultures (don't know about the Middle East) children are beaten if they try to use their left hand, so they have to learn switch quite early. My Dad used to tell me stories about how the teacher would hit his hand with a ruler if he forgot to write with his right. And his father (another converted leftie) approved of this! Using the left hand was something that would get brought up as "problem behavior" in parent-teacher conversations.
posted by Kevin Street at 9:40 PM on September 9, 2012 [4 favorites]


This, of course, alludes to you:

I'm not sure if you're joking but us sinister southpaws are more likely to to have accidents with power tools/heavy equipment and more likely to do more serious damage when that happens.

Most lefty complaints are small things, but it does affect us in tangible ways. I don't think it's quite the hell that being too tall seems to be, however.
posted by polyhedron at 9:41 PM on September 9, 2012


Oh yes, I've also always had my own lefty baseball glove. I would never even think of going to play without it, although there always seems to be another lefty who didn't bring one.
posted by Philofacts at 9:41 PM on September 9, 2012


The worst thing about left handedness is using a mug with a humorous things on it - held in your left hand, only you get the joke.
posted by thylacinthine at 9:42 PM on September 9, 2012 [22 favorites]


If I were a lefty, I'd be very interested in seeing what people do in the Arabic world, where most people are righties but their script goes right to left. So undoubtedly they've been working on many of the writing-related problems for a while.

It would be a cinch if you write calligraphically without your hand ever resting on the paper at all, of course.
posted by kenko at 9:43 PM on September 9, 2012


"What's with the 'Bonking elbows with a righty at the dinner table'? I don't understand this."

Oooh, oooh, it's if you're in a booth at a restaurant, and the lefty person sits on the right, and the righty person sits on the left, you're elbowing each other when you lift your forks up since your elbow comes at least partially up-and-out when you lift the fork to your mouth (try it). It is a more pronounced effect when you are eating with semi-coordinated small children. (You also may have opinions on where high-chair or booster-needing children are w/r/t your dominant hand; my toddler is on my LEFT at home, and I can't reach to do things like cut up his meat smaller with just one hand, because I can't do it lefty. The baby is on my right hand side as he needs more help. Anyway, point is, my entire childhood was spent sitting on my mom's right in booths so that we wouldn't bonk elbows -- a child young enough to need to sit next to a parent, but self-feeding enough that I could be on her non-dominant hand size because I wouldn't need parental rescue with my food slicing. I still automatically sit to her right in booths.

Is the #1 thing left-to-write writing systems with ink? That seems like #1.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 9:44 PM on September 9, 2012


I'm so sorry for the serial posting - the ipad one reminded me to note that the actual kindle is suitable for lefties and righties equally - there are forward and back page buttons on either side.
posted by thylacinthine at 9:45 PM on September 9, 2012


My mother was born left-handed, and had the misfortune to go to elementary school in the 1950s, where the teachers would smack her left hand if she used it for anything they felt she should use her right hand for. She learned quickly enough, but can't use her left hand for anything.
posted by Ghidorah at 9:46 PM on September 9, 2012


I gave up years ago and just learn anything new right handed. Still write lefty, though.
And if you guys would hold your knives and forks like civilised people...
posted by bystander at 9:49 PM on September 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


Don't Arab countries consider the left hand unclean? Do they freak out if you use it for eating?

Can't speak from experience, and I think it's more than just the Middle East or Islamic cultures that have that taboo, but I've long had the Oppressed Sinistral idle fantasy of snarking after a meal or a handshake there, "hah, I wipe my butt with my right hand!" (No, I don't really have a death wish.)

It's a reasonable taboo, I suppose, given the standards of hygiene in the past in most places (and in the present in some), but I think it's also rooted in a general ancient superstitious distrust of lefties that has little to do with hygiene and much to do with our Otherness as a minority. Otherwise (no pun intended) one would think cultures would make allowances for the lefties in their midst to do things in a mirror fashion.

When I was a little kid in Germany, the teacher in the kindergarten (I was all of 4 years old) would slap my left hand when I tried to draw with it. My mom, also left-handed, came in one day, saw me struggling to use my right, had strong words with teacher,and yanked me out of there.
posted by Philofacts at 9:55 PM on September 9, 2012 [4 favorites]


Yes, I too have joined that club of mangled halflings; these days the only things I reliably do with my left hand are write and brush my teeth. As a consequence, I am terrible with scissors.

As I've grown older I've realised that true, 100% lefties (play sport lefty, scissors lefty, cooking knife lefty etc) are a very rare breed.
posted by smoke at 9:57 PM on September 9, 2012 [3 favorites]


There's this restaurant I've been going to for the past twenty-nine years. A couple of weeks back I was using a Sony eReader at the table, and this waitress (who's been working there as long as I've been a costumer) sees it and says, "Oh, you're left handed?" Well, yeah. For three decades I've been moving napkins, silverware and cups over to the other side of the plate, but apparently she never noticed before.
posted by Kevin Street at 9:59 PM on September 9, 2012 [4 favorites]


For three decades I've been moving napkins, silverware and cups over to the other side of the plate, but apparently she never noticed before.

Yeah, I've been moving the cutlery, etc. about as long, but never has anyone commented.

I use the fork in my left, knife always in the right (for kitchen prep, too), but it's never occurred to me whether that's the same or opposite as the righty way. I don't generally eyeball other people's eating habits.

When I use chopsticks (I'm good enough with them to pick up a grain of uncooked rice, at least with the pointy-type sticks, if not the blunt ones), it's lefty, of course, and I do notice odd looks from Chinese wait staff from time to time... Probably the same general left-hander taboo?
posted by Philofacts at 10:11 PM on September 9, 2012


If only there was some sort of...I dunno, Emporium or something that sold specialized left-handed versions of common tools, furniture etc.

Hmmm.
posted by MattMangels at 10:12 PM on September 9, 2012 [5 favorites]


Is the #1 thing left-to-write writing systems with ink? That seems like #1.

In my informal polling scissors have a strong lead. They usually only work rightproperly if they're of relatively high-quality; the blades must be tight and sharp. For some reason "nice" scissors also tend to have molded plastic grips contoured for a right hand.
posted by polyhedron at 10:12 PM on September 9, 2012 [4 favorites]


Actually there was at least one such place:
One of [Simpsons writer George] Meyer's sisters says that he was once moved nearly to tears upon spotting a store for left-handed people a business that he felt was doomed, and that later inspired the Leftorium, a struggling enterprise owned by the Simpsons' neighbor Ned Flanders.
posted by MattMangels at 10:15 PM on September 9, 2012 [4 favorites]


My favorite bit of leftie lore (I'm a leftie too, by the way) is the etymology of the word "sinister". Originally, it was just the Latin word meaning "on the left side", opposite of dexter. The left hand side is so reviled by the world that all of the evil, malicious, foreboding, harmful meanings of the word sinister evolved because of it's direct association with this unfavored side.
posted by ceribus peribus at 10:15 PM on September 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


I generally enjoy being left-handed, particularly in the conspiratorial grins that tend to occur when you discover someone new in your life is also left-handed. I've only experienced anti-lefty prejudice once in my life; a fourth-grade teacher, who made us do our homework in pencil, was incensed that my writing was invariably a bit smudgy. I would then have to rewrite the previous day's homework and that day's homework. The next day, as there would be at least one smudge, I would have to rewrite the previous two days' homework plus the new night's. No comments on the actual content of the writing. This went on for about two weeks before my mother had A TALK with her. (I was secretly pleased to find out that she had been dismissed, some years later, for angrily pulling a kid by the ear in front of a student teacher.) Oddly, I notice my left-handedness acutely when I'm playing handbells, of all things, and have to stop myself from always switching the bell I'm ringing more to my dominant hand so I don't get the notes out of order.

It's been my strange observation that I encountered significantly more lefties at the two Ivies where I went to school than anywhere else, particularly in the humanities/theatre departments. Definitely more than the "normal" proportions would be. I've wondered if there's a correlation or whether it's just confirmation bias. Of course, any correlation would have to take into consideration the social/nurture aspect; that is, what effect does it have to grow up in a family/society that whacks left-handedness out of you, versus just leaving you alone, and is that correlated with being discouraged to pursue a career in the arts?

In any case, I'm marrying a fellow lefty, so we can sit next to each other and eat with impunity! And buy all the correctly-handed appliances from the Leftorium.
posted by ilana at 10:16 PM on September 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


As an additional note from a rightie, I always wrote only on the good side of my spiral notebooks. Then, when I reached the end, turned them upside down and wrote on the backside of all the pages, thus never having to write with my hand over the spiral.
posted by jacquilynne at 10:16 PM on September 9, 2012 [4 favorites]


19. Watching 'The Notebook'.
posted by jimmythefish at 10:24 PM on September 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


I use the fork in my left, knife always in the right (for kitchen prep, too), but it's never occurred to me whether that's the same or opposite as the righty way.

Yeah, that's the righty way. I don't understand the elbow bonking either.
posted by stopgap at 10:28 PM on September 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


1. Chainsaws. I can use other right-handed power tools pretty comfortably, but I just can't hold a chainsaw straight. My right hand is simply too weak and holding it the lefty way would be plain dangerous. Combined with the problems with rifles, it means that when the zombie apocalypse comes, lefties are doomed.
posted by daniel_charms at 10:30 PM on September 9, 2012 [6 favorites]


The worst thing about left handedness is using a mug with a humorous things on it - held in your left hand, only you get the joke.

Jeesh. Just buy a mug with the handle on the other side.
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium at 10:31 PM on September 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


Ah, daniel, quite. String trimmers also tend to be problematic.
posted by polyhedron at 10:31 PM on September 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


Woodshop. You have to operate machines right-handed because left will cross over your field of vision. I'm pretty ambidextrous but a lot of woodshop machines get me flustered.

Shaking hands. Seriously, I regularly get myself all confused over which hand to offer.
posted by vegartanipla at 10:42 PM on September 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


I'm right-handed and the Kindle app thing doesn't make sense. Most right-handed people hold the iPad with their left hand and use their dominant hand for navigating. It never occurred to me that it was an annoyance to turn the pages in the app with the right hand. I also prefer holding measuring cups with my left hand because using the dominant hand is easier to use for pouring ingredients into the cup.
posted by MaryDellamorte at 10:43 PM on September 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


The message being that the things most likely to maim and/or kill a person rarely take left-handed people into consideration. This, if anything, is the reason being left-handed sucks.
posted by polyhedron at 10:45 PM on September 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


Oh, and also, dancing; particularly if you're not super-coordinated to begin with. Especially if it's a dance number for a show; I always instinctively start off on the wrong foot (literally).
posted by ilana at 10:46 PM on September 9, 2012


I can't remember if I've ever actually used left-handed scissors (I have a vague memory of being presented with a pair in kindergarten that was so dull and janky that they wouldn't have cut anything under any circumstances). I get around by my lack of dexterity by turning the paper with my left hand and keeping the scissors more or less stationary, though I never really thought about it until no—holy shit that's why I can't cut fabric to save my goddamned life.
posted by wreckingball at 10:48 PM on September 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


My friend doesn't believe that left handed scissors are actually a thing. I showed him my treasured, ancient, red-handled scissors once and he laughed, took them his in his right hand and started cutting paper. He thinks it's a scam or something.
posted by Kevin Street at 10:56 PM on September 9, 2012 [5 favorites]


Re: #13 about measuring cups showing the metric side. From Wikipedia: the International System of Units has been adopted as the official system of weights and measures by all nations in the world except for Burma, Liberia and the United States.

Seriously guys, when 95% of the world has switched to something, shouldn't you at least consider switching yourselves? If nothing else, think of the lefties!
posted by Harald74 at 11:03 PM on September 9, 2012 [11 favorites]


Re: Eating.

Most people, in North America at least, eat wrong. We tend to use our dominant hand for both kniving and forking, necessitating lots of utensil swapping. It's inefficient.

Me, I've wised up and learned to do it right. Fork left, knife right, always. That's why they're on the table like that. It's a bit awkward at first, but it doesn't take long to master.

But I can't say I've ever encountered an elbow jab from a lefty. Maybe try spacing out the chairs, stupid.
posted by Sys Rq at 11:09 PM on September 9, 2012


Pizza. So I, along with, apparently , nearly every other lefty who eats right-handed, do this crazy thing when trying to eat pizza with a knife and fork. Namely I try to hold down the slice with my knife while attempting to tear off chunks with my fork. Which does not work. It's bad enough that I made it to 40 without ever realizing I was doing it, but now I have had it pointed out to me I still do it./
posted by tallus at 11:14 PM on September 9, 2012


It's actually a lot simpler to just sit where it's not an issue. I guess moving the chair and your place setting works too.
posted by polyhedron at 11:16 PM on September 9, 2012


eat pizza with a knife and fork

What.
posted by stopgap at 11:18 PM on September 9, 2012 [10 favorites]


eat pizza with a knife and fork

What.


And don't talk with your mouth full!
posted by chavenet at 11:22 PM on September 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


A wave of nostalgia hit me seeing that Lisa Frank notebook. I totally had a Lisa Frank Trapper Keeper. And folders. And stickers.
posted by littlesq at 11:37 PM on September 9, 2012


One of the worst things: guitars, bows for archery, golf clubs and other devices where one has to choose between getting a special left handed version - or just learning the right handed one. In all of these cases (as a leftie) I have experimented with the left handed model before going back to the right handed one for the sake of choice, interchangeability and my suspicion that the left handed device was not really helping me. Right handed people seem to suffer absolutely none of the angst and uncertainty about their choice of equipment.

Best thing - for me at least - being able to write and mouse at the same time.
posted by rongorongo at 11:53 PM on September 9, 2012 [6 favorites]


it is way better to have the number pad opposite the mouse.

Even better is to have no number pad at all. Really, what is that thing for? Do you use it? I sure don't. So much happier with a narrower keyboard with no superfluous keys sticking out to the right.

I don't think it's quite the hell that being too tall seems to be, however.

Oh, sure, I have to stand on my knees to shampoo my hair, and the top of the bathroom mirror is below eye level, and I bump my head on the ceiling in the car unless I slump down, and I have to hunch over when I use the ATM or the words don't line up with the buttons.... but being tall gets me laid. Definitely not hell.
posted by Mars Saxman at 12:06 AM on September 10, 2012 [3 favorites]


Even better is to have no number pad at all. Really, what is that thing for? Do you use it?
I use it to control characters in MMORPGs if it will allow me to map controls to those keys. Before I was able to use controllers on my computer, I also mapped directional buttons in emulators to those keys.

The numpad is just all right with me.
posted by Redfield at 12:13 AM on September 10, 2012


I love how about 90% of these revolve around school. In the grown-up/professional world, being left-handed generally only affects me when I have to use somebody else's scissors. It's like school and academia are designed expressly for the purpose of torturing and ostracizing left-handed people.

Being left-handed also [debatably] makes you about twice as likely to be gay, and much more likely to be elected president, adding another multitude of societal stigmas and inconveniences to your daily life.

polyhedron: "Most lefty complaints are small things, but it does affect us in tangible ways. I don't think it's quite the hell that being too tall seems to be, however."

Don't people generally consider tall people to generally be more trustworthy, intelligent, and attractive? I guess it sucks to hit your head on door frames, but the other things seem like a pretty nice advantage.

polyhedron: "Ah, daniel, quite. String trimmers also tend to be problematic."

Aha! That's why I can't use them! It's not just me!!!

Philofacts: "Some of these are a bit silly. (Car coffee mugs? C'mon. "

My car's cupholder is in a weird place, and I end up holding my mug between my legs when I'm driving, because my clumsy right hand can never find the cupholder without taking my eyes off of the road.

Mars Saxman: "Even better is to have no number pad at all. Really, what is that thing for? Do you use it? I sure don't. So much happier with a narrower keyboard with no superfluous keys sticking out to the right."

If you're an accountant or Excel-jockey, and you don't use the number pad, you're likely being terribly inefficient at your job. Lots of people never need to use the numpad, but when you're typing lots of numbers, it's about 50,000 times more efficient.

That said, as a lefty, this bit never bothered me. I can use a numpad quite efficiently with either hand (but switching between typing letters and using the numpad is awkward -- maybe that's easier for righties?). Maybe the layout of the keyboard itself might be biased (enter key and harder-to-reach punctuation symbols are on the right or other nuances of the qwerty layout?)
posted by schmod at 12:25 AM on September 10, 2012 [1 favorite]


I hear flying a helicopter is not so great if you're left handed.
posted by ryanrs at 12:42 AM on September 10, 2012


I can do things backwards, but it seems like it'd be really hard to do things shorter. Sometime during my perusal of this post I decided being left-handed wasn't that bad.
posted by polyhedron at 12:46 AM on September 10, 2012


Even better is to have no number pad at all. Really, what is that thing for? Do you use it? I sure don't. So much happier with a narrower keyboard with no superfluous keys sticking out to the right.

Are you one of the people advocating removal of the caps lock key as well? I've got a braying mob armed with model Ms that would like a word with you.
posted by Dr Dracator at 12:50 AM on September 10, 2012 [1 favorite]


Being forced to use the right hand and stuttering.

Late sixties Wales - my grandmother was horrified to discover that I was a leftie, her only point of reference being my Aunt Florrie, known as a bit of a floozie in her younger days (she went stockingless in summer). My parents fought an ongoing battle to stop her forcing me to use my right hand, something she bitterly resented.

But Aunt Florrie was round and soft and warm and taught me to knit, something only another leftie can do, I think.
posted by humph at 12:56 AM on September 10, 2012 [3 favorites]


I'm sure it's just me being dim, but I don't get what's causing that unexplained "silver hand" effect in the list.
posted by Paul Slade at 1:22 AM on September 10, 2012


Also do you know how hard it is to find a left-handed banana?
posted by aubilenon at 1:26 AM on September 10, 2012


Paul Slade: That silver hand is graphite from a pencil since you have to rub your hand over every line of your pencil-covered paper.
posted by aubilenon at 1:28 AM on September 10, 2012


Unfortunately, it is nearly impossible to find a fully programmable left-handed or ambidextrous four button mouse. Everything seems to be left-handed, or programmable, but not both.

I'm using a left-handed Evoluent VerticalMouse and damn it's the most comfortable mouse ever. All four buttons are programmable, too.

•I never knew lefties were bothered by mice and number pads on the right.

Number pads on the right is a big advantage for lefties. It lets you center the alpha keys in the middle of the screen (like on a laptop) and have your mouse near at hand on the left.

Most of this list is stuff that's incredibly easy to work around, actually -- even silver hand can be avoided by changing writing styles. I also trained myself to form characters in a way that I was pulling the nib rather than pushing it.
posted by fightorflight at 1:36 AM on September 10, 2012


In fact, those same Evoluent folks make a right-handed keyboard so that righties can enjoy the same mouse experience lefties do
posted by fightorflight at 1:37 AM on September 10, 2012


Seems like stick shift would be worse than right-handed cupholders.
posted by theredpen at 1:46 AM on September 10, 2012


Luckily for me, the teacher who taught me (a lefty) to write was compassionate and pragmatic. She taught me the Belly Button Method: You line up the bottom right corner of your sheet of paper so that it points directly at your belly button. This avoids the need for the wrist-arcing writing style that you sometimes see left-handed writers using, as well as much of the side-of-the-hand graphite smudginess (because that part of the hand then stays below the lines you've written). Thank you, Mrs. D.!
posted by MonkeyToes at 1:46 AM on September 10, 2012 [4 favorites]


Long before the internets was mainstream, Beak St in London had the wonderfully named Anything Left Handed, a little emporium for lefties.

The shop closed in 2006. But it still lives as an online retail store with its own Left Handers Club and a whole bunch of products for lefties.
posted by MuffinMan at 2:23 AM on September 10, 2012


You know, I used to know a guy who caddied at a fancy golf club, and he would make a few bucks on the side now and then selling left handed tees to this doctor who golfed left.
posted by ceribus peribus at 2:34 AM on September 10, 2012


Avoiding silver-hand is fairly easy when writing once you've learned an appropriate hand configuration. Like MonkeyToes, I was taught to tilt the paper sideways and write with my hand below the line. It still requires concentration to keep the lines of writing parallel to the page instead of to my hand and I have to shift my elbow to adjust position a lot more frequently than a right-hander would, but that's hardly an imposition.

As the only leftie in a family of right-handers, there were a lot of things that I didn't learn until much later than my sisters - not until I encountered a leftie teacher in school, who taught me all the things that I should have learned years before. I didn't learn how to tie my own shoelaces until I was eight, which meant I was the only kid in class with permission to wear shoes with velcro fasteners instead of shoelaces.

I still can't slice bread straight. The cutting edge on a kitchen knife is along one side of the blade only, so for a right-hander the twisting motion from the knife cancels the twisting motion from the hand to produce a more-or-less even slice. Try to use the same knife in your left hand, and those two twisting motions become cumulative and produce wedges instead of slices.
posted by talitha_kumi at 2:40 AM on September 10, 2012 [1 favorite]


Oh, and driving a manual transmission car is a lot easier for left-handers than for right-handers if you live in a country where everyone drives on the left side of the road.
posted by talitha_kumi at 2:42 AM on September 10, 2012


I'm left handed and it makes sense to use the mouse with the right hand so I can take notes with my left.
posted by KateViolet at 2:45 AM on September 10, 2012


Not if you learn to drive on the left. When I drive a left hand drive car changing gear doesn't feel natural at all until I get used to it.
posted by MuffinMan at 2:46 AM on September 10, 2012


eat pizza with a knife and fork

Many Italians eat pizza with a knife and fork, fwiw.
posted by gen at 2:47 AM on September 10, 2012


I'm not left handed, but I'm twice left footed.
posted by twoleftfeet at 3:14 AM on September 10, 2012 [1 favorite]


I use the number pad to rock the page up, page down, start of file, end of rows, etc. Oh, you use the dedicated pguppgdwn buttons? ya right! number row to type in numbers much faster than you numpad-light-turned-on chumps. you can only use one finger for numpad while I`m using two. Who will be faster?
posted by Yowser at 3:19 AM on September 10, 2012


you can only use one finger for numpad while I`m using two.

Is this a joke I'm not getting?

If I'm entering numbers with a numerical keypad, I'll be using four fingers, and a thumb.
posted by pompomtom at 3:27 AM on September 10, 2012


Or are you left handed, and that's the point?
posted by pompomtom at 3:27 AM on September 10, 2012


I'm pretty ambidextrous but write with my left hand. I LOVE the keypad on the right, even though I still use my mouse with the right. It never occurred to me until recently that I could mouse with the left-- I tried it and it felt too weird.
posted by miss tea at 3:41 AM on September 10, 2012


I am left handed, and quite frankly do not believe that it is possible to use five fingers at once on a numpad.
posted by Yowser at 3:42 AM on September 10, 2012


On the three ring binders, why write on the paper while it's in the binder? Just take it out!

Pretty much the only time I notice any trouble being left handed anymore is when portable game systems have awkward controls. That and switching over the cutlery at restaurants. I remember being super impressed once when a waiter, who must have noticed me drinking left handed, laid my cutlery out with the knife on my left.

(Datapoint: Knife usually left hand, mouse always in right, think numpads are really useful and miss being able to enter numbers at hyperspeed on my laptop.)
posted by lucidium at 3:49 AM on September 10, 2012


Doctors should come up with a way to cure all the south-paws, so that they can be normal.
posted by Flood at 4:00 AM on September 10, 2012


What's with the 'Bonking elbows with a righty at the dinner table'? I don't understand this.
Eating_utensil_etiquette#American_style
posted by caek at 4:02 AM on September 10, 2012


Oh, and driving a manual transmission car is a lot easier for left-handers than for right-handers if you live in a country where everyone drives on the left side of the road.

As a right-hander living in the UK, I have never had a problem operating the gear stick with my left hand, and have never heard anyone else complain about it either. I've also never had any issues using the other hand for the gears if I was driving a left-hand drive car.
posted by EndsOfInvention at 4:06 AM on September 10, 2012


Eating_utensil_etiquette#American_style

What I really don't understand is, why are you making eating so difficult for yourselves?

On the other hand, I think I understand now why fast food is so popular in the US.
posted by daniel_charms at 4:07 AM on September 10, 2012 [2 favorites]


theredpen: "Seems like stick shift would be worse than right-handed cupholders."
Ask an Englishman. The vast majority of right-handed English people change gears with their non-dominant hand.

I've driven a RHD stick shift for a week; it was no big deal.
posted by brokkr at 4:16 AM on September 10, 2012


I got in trouble for using the " back" of the paper once in jr. High school when I tried to adapt the spiral notebook. I adapted. I was probably 15 before I even saw a pair of "left-handed" scissors, and I couldn't make them work, having long since developed a special grip for the right handed ones. Those special "ergonomic" right- handed scissors hurt, though.

Most things, I just ended up doing right handed--mouse, keypads, can openers, etc.-- but three-ring binders are a goddam misery. I just always opened them, took the paper out & tossed the cursed objects on the floor.

We never had a left-handed baseball glove at any school I ever went to. I did get pretty quick at catching the ball, transferring it to the right hand, flinging the glove to the ground, transferring the ball back to the left & throwing. So much so that when I finally did get a left-handed glove as an adult, it took me a good bit to learn to catch with my right hand.

I always try to scope out a good elbow position at restaurant tables, but chances are still pretty good a couple of us are going to confuse our water glasses.
posted by Devils Rancher at 4:21 AM on September 10, 2012


It's been my strange observation that I encountered significantly more lefties at the two Ivies where I went to school than anywhere else, particularly in the humanities/theatre departments.

As schmod mentions, this goes all the way to the top.
posted by psoas at 4:23 AM on September 10, 2012


10. Numberpad is on the righthand side of keyboard

At least as a lefty I've never had to use ASWZ (or whatever it is) to control a first person shooter. I just just the numberpad on right and the mouse on the left.

They didn't mention pots or ladles with the pour spout only on one side.
posted by octothorpe at 4:26 AM on September 10, 2012


I'm pretty much 100% lefty in all respects; about the only thing I do righty is hold cutlery the normal way round; fork in left, knife in right. I notice I do tend to 'hold' with the knife, and 'tear' with the fork, but I've been doing it all my life so going the other way round just feels too strange.

I love my left-handed mouse - left-handed ergonomic razer deathadder - so much so that I bought another on my own money for the office. Though I mix-and-match with a magic trackpad now, which is fairly easy to switch to lefty config in software for extra gestures (bettertouchtool et al)

Gamepads are hard, especially FPS; you're aiming with your right thumbstick, so I compensate by just getting it to the right height and using my left stick to aim by movement instead of 'turret' rotate. I much prefer PC gaming for that reason though.

Good scissors always come with contoured righty grip, so they bite into your hand when using them. I can use them lefty, but they hurt and the blade cuts are aligned the wrong round, so my judgement of where I'm going to cut sucks.

Writing lefty wise, the trick is
a) rotate the top right corner of the paper down (righties rotate left top down), with the paper under the line of your forearm/elbow line as it naturally falls
b) do downstrokes towards your elbow, which will likely result in a slight left slant or straight up, depending upon paper angle - this is fine, no matter what your teacher told you
c) hold the pen in a normal tripod grip, but further back from the tip - you want an inch or inch and half back, so you see what you're writing/avoid smudging. You can also do the alternative grip between middle and forefinger, with the pen resting on the webbing between middle and forefinger, and thumb coming 'underneath'. (Try it, it works for righties too, and is really quite comfy)

The main downside is that it's much more natural to do horizontal strokes from right to left, which really fucks you up when trying to do cursive writing, especially t's and joined o's.
That and your slant wanders like a 12-pint drunk, or mine does anyway.

I'm currently trying out switching to an italic hand, instead of my current mixture of printing/cursive, as I've recently started trying out decent fountain pens/ink and finding them much nicer than rollerballs with a proper grip so I don't end up with blue-hand syndrome. Lamy fine nib + diamine majestic blue = awesome super smooth free-flowing ink.
Not 100% convinced about the al-star/safari shaped grip, but I found a variation that mostly works. I'd love a lamy 2000, but WAY too expensive.
posted by ArkhanJG at 4:34 AM on September 10, 2012 [2 favorites]


Best thing - for me at least - being able to write and mouse at the same time.

I do consider it a distinct advantage actually in Photoshop to have my Wacom tablet on the left & my mouse on the right, though there are those stupid moments when I lay my stylus down on the tablet & then can't figure out why my mouse has gone all twitchy.
posted by Devils Rancher at 4:37 AM on September 10, 2012 [1 favorite]


Ask an Englishman. The vast majority of right-handed English people change gears with their non-dominant hand.

One of the best things about being lefty - easy stick/handbrake controls in UK, and you get left-control over the clutch making hill starts a cinch.

You can even operate the radio with the easy hand. Surprised automatics aren't very popular in UK, you'd think it'd make sense for righties to not have to screw with the gears so much.
posted by ArkhanJG at 4:37 AM on September 10, 2012


I can often tell if someone is left-handed or right-handed by looking at their hair sworl: 8.4% of right handed people and 45% of left handed people have counterclockwise hair-whorls.

It's a pretty great party trick, but I haven't found a better use for it otherwise.
posted by twoleftfeet at 4:45 AM on September 10, 2012 [1 favorite]


Power tools are definitely a problem. I've become pretty ambidextrous but cannot use our saber saw - controls and handle on the right and it just doesn't feel safe. I use my mitre saw right handed but that doesn't take a lot of strength.

I'm a lefty married to a righty. We have 3 kids: one righty, one left and one totally ambidextrous. The ambidextrous kid started out writing with his left hand and switching hands when he got to the middle of the paper but his kindergarden teacher made him choose one hand.

My mother and grandmother tried to teach me to knit but they pretty much wanted me to stand on my head to deal with the lefty thing. Never worked.

And I belong to a group of artists - overwhelming majority of us are left-handed - right brain dominant!
posted by leslies at 4:50 AM on September 10, 2012


I'm one of those mixed-up folks who do some things righty, other things lefty. I shoot left, which makes things like shotguns a real pain (though, they DO make left-side eject guns...but you pay a lot extra for them) I bat left, throw right. Bowl left. Kick left. And on and on. I wonder how much your dominant hand is influenced by which eye is dominant? I'm a left-eyed person.

My dad, who was a natural lefty, told me tales of growing-up attending Catholic school as a kid. The nuns would crack a ruler over his knuckles whenever he lapsed and started writing with his left hand.
posted by Thorzdad at 4:51 AM on September 10, 2012


#1 and #2 are essentially the same thing: "writing with your hand crossing wire binding sucks".

I'm a rightie, so maybe there's something I'm not missing, but what's wrong with "so write on the left side and leave the right blank"?

There's also "use notebooks bound with glue or thread", although that seems to only be an option when you're a REAL GROWNUP or something, and these complaints seem to be from the perspective of someone in school. Or take notes with a stylus and that iPad she's complaining about in #5. Or just use a top-bound tablet of paper. Probably yellow.

I also can't really remember the last time I used a ballpoint pen (#5) outside of being passed one to sign a receipt. Is using a felt-tip verboten in this woman's school or something? Ballpoints are just generally a shitty writing experience no matter what your chirality, the ink is crap, they gouge the page.

And most of the time when I'm holding my iPad one-handed it's with the left. Which does make the Kindle app suck. But this is usually because I'm doing something with my dominant hand while still reading. I'd think this would be ADVANTAGE: LEFTY? Different people, different grips.
posted by egypturnash at 4:58 AM on September 10, 2012


People say they're left handed or right handed but the way this usually plays out is more complicated than that. Many people are cross dominant, where a person favors one hand for some tasks and the other hand for others.

It makes sense to use both hands equally, because you've got two of them, even if you have to use them for different purposes.
posted by twoleftfeet at 5:06 AM on September 10, 2012


It would seem like a fairly easy hack for apple to allow the handedness of iPad apps to be reversed. Or if not easy, at least doable.
posted by Obscure Reference at 5:15 AM on September 10, 2012


Actually there was at least one such [left-handed store]

There was one in Boston's Quincy Market in the 80's. It was on the upper level of the North Market (same side as Durgin Park). We bought a couple of gifts for my left-handed father there. I thought it was pretty cool, and I wish it was still there because my kid is a leftie.

I'm right-handed, and consequently side dominance seems like a small thing, but watching a left-handed child develop illustrates that the world really is subtly but forcefully laid out for right-handed people. It's even tricky to demonstrate how to do simple tasks-- either I remember to do the task (poorly) with my left or she awkwardly copies me with her right.

I think it's telling that when you know someone who's close to ambidextrous (like my dad), they're nearly always a natural lefty. They've just been made to accommodate so frequently that they've become better with their non-dominant hand than righties. Baseball really brings this out-- my dad throws right because when they went to buy his first baseball glove (in the early 50s), all the left-handed gloves were crappy and he wanted a nice one, so he insisted on getting a rightie and learning. And the most-effective switch hitters seem to be lefties.
posted by Mayor Curley at 5:15 AM on September 10, 2012 [3 favorites]


Surprised automatics aren't very popular in UK, you'd think it'd make sense for righties to not have to screw with the gears so much.

Having recently had to drive left-hand drive for the first time, I can assure you that it's all about practice. I am mostly right-handed (cricket, rifles and archery being the exceptions), and have got used to having my dominant hand on the steering wheel. Shifting gears and operating the park brake are really not tricky, and are easily within the abilities of my left hand. Swapping over, on the other hand, was a bloody nightmare.
posted by pompomtom at 5:36 AM on September 10, 2012


My favourite thing about the Yaris, when I drove it, was the cup holders on the left hand side. Easy to access and out of the way of all the centre console controls. I'm right handed though and have never had a problem using either hand for drinking.
posted by jamincan at 5:43 AM on September 10, 2012


I think most lefties wind up at least somewhat ambidextrous. It's impossible not to, with the number of things that just work "better" right-handed. I write and eat left, cook mostly left (although I use a knife right), shoot pool left, but do just about everything else right-handed.

In kindergarten, they tried giving me left-handed scissors, but every report card came back with an unsatisfactory grade in "ability to use scissors." I cut right-handed; can't do it any other way.

Also, I don't know if anybody has played the board game Apples to Apples, but I can't fan the cards out in my left hand without obscuring the text, which is on the left edge of the card. I'm not sure if this is a left-handed thing, or a way-I-hold-cards thing.
posted by uncleozzy at 5:51 AM on September 10, 2012 [2 favorites]


One of the hardest thing about my job teaching preschool is having to acquiesce to the parents who don't want their child to write/eat/use scissors with their naturally dominant left hand. In my class this year I have two children who are being allowed to use their left hands and two who we have to constantly watch to have them do everything with their right.

One of the older children at my school does everything left handed except scissors because for the elementary school entrance exams he is required to cut right handed.
posted by emmling at 5:55 AM on September 10, 2012


The word ambisinister is interesting. It means clumsy or unskillful with both hands. It's the opposite of ambidextrous. Of course, "sinister" has etymological roots in left-handedness and "dexterity" has its roots in right-handedness.

Again, I'm going to push the idea that handedness isn't a firm thing. It's a bias. It gets reinforced by the people who teach us to write and by the things in our environment, but it's not a completely natural symmetry break.
posted by twoleftfeet at 5:59 AM on September 10, 2012 [1 favorite]


13. Measuring cups show you the stupid metric side.
Aye, folk who use metric are stupid. They never get any practise with their 12, 14, and 16 times table. Stupids!
posted by Jehan at 6:05 AM on September 10, 2012 [4 favorites]


I'm a lefty who developed the habit of turning the spiral notebook upside down.

Once I was working with a dyslexic who, faced with the unusual configuration of the paper, began writing backwards, mirror-image style. It was fascinating. She wasn't able to write forwards again until we turned the notebook right side up again.
posted by ook at 6:10 AM on September 10, 2012 [1 favorite]



Best thing - for me at least - being able to write and mouse at the same time.


Yeah, I have a left-handed colleague who cites this as useful indeed. Of course, we were once e-mailing get-well wishes to an ill co-worker -- a photo of the rest of us signed via mouse -- and my colleague confessed that she was unable to produce anything recognizable when using the mouse left-handed.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 6:16 AM on September 10, 2012


I'm right handed, left eye dominant. Because my mom was left handed, I can use a mouse with either hand but I strongly prefer to use my left. I shoot a rifle lefty, but prefer to shoot a pistol with my right. I write with my right, but I'm pretty sure I hold both pencils and forks incorrectly due to not being able to use my mom as an example. I'm about to have a kid. I hope she's right handed, but only because her father and I both are, and I don't want her to be behind in learning because I can't show her how to write.
posted by Night_owl at 6:18 AM on September 10, 2012


As a child, I was naturally ambidextrous, switching from right to left hand when writing. However, that was frowned upon in the 60's so my teacher forced me to use my right hand for writing. However, I still maintain left hand dominance for most things, including scissors.
When I learned to solder the difference between my right hand soldering and my left hand soldering was remarkable. My instructor commented that if she hadn't seen me solder, she wouldn't have believed it was the same person doing the work.
posted by pentagoet at 6:18 AM on September 10, 2012


On the plus side:

If you are left-handed and your partner is right-handed, when you are lying in bed facing one another you both can have your dominant hand free to do sinister things dexterously.
posted by drlith at 6:22 AM on September 10, 2012 [13 favorites]


Lefties! Come back to fountain pens! Use them with a fast-drying ink, find an orientation that works for you and spend about 15-30 minutes a day practicing, and soon you will not only have handwriting to be slightly less ashamed of, but a growing addiction to fountain pens that cannot be overcome, merely modulated.


I have 30 right now. Mmmm, Esterbrooks...
posted by alex.dudley at 6:23 AM on September 10, 2012 [2 favorites]


I think most lefties wind up at least somewhat ambidextrous. It's impossible not to, with the number of things that just work "better" right-handed.

Oh hellz yeah.
posted by soundguy99 at 6:26 AM on September 10, 2012


talitha_kumi: "I still can't slice bread straight. The cutting edge on a kitchen knife is along one side of the blade only, so for a right-hander the twisting motion from the knife cancels the twisting motion from the hand to produce a more-or-less even slice. Try to use the same knife in your left hand, and those two twisting motions become cumulative and produce wedges instead of slices"

Get the fuck outta here. I thought I just needed more practice!
posted by ArgentCorvid at 6:26 AM on September 10, 2012 [2 favorites]


I'm mostly a rightie, but fairly competent with my left hand because I broke my right arm as a kid and had a past-the-elbow cast (and then a couple of surgerries) and had to learn to do a lot of things with my left hand.

I'm left-dominant when it comes to my phone and my e-reader. Is this common among righties? For lefties, do you use your right hand more for phone things?
posted by rtha at 6:35 AM on September 10, 2012


but I can't fan the cards out in my left hand without obscuring the text

uncleozzy, I can pretty much forget I am left handed until I play cards. I fan them upside down so I can see them.
posted by Killick at 6:39 AM on September 10, 2012


Cross dominant here with writing as a southpaw.

Two words - Erasable pens. Evil, evil, evil.
posted by Samizdata at 6:52 AM on September 10, 2012 [1 favorite]


The thing that annoys me most is how everyone who needs me to sign a receipt places it on the counter angled the wrong way. I almost always make a big show of turning it around so I can sign it but nobody ever seems to notice my dramatic passive-aggressive gesture.
posted by something something at 6:55 AM on September 10, 2012 [3 favorites]


Another solution to the leftie handwriting thing is to develop a backslant (that is my handwriting, btw) -- that way you're pulling the pen toward you like right-handed people do, instead of pushing it.

(Apparently, graphologists interpret a backslant to mean extreme emotional repression, or something like that, so watch out....)
posted by heurtebise at 6:56 AM on September 10, 2012


Also, for some reason it never even occurred to me to use a mouse with my left hand, probably because I learned to use a computer at home and both my parents are right handed. I've always wondered why right handed people don't use their left for the mouse, because it's really convenient to be able to simultaneously use the mouse and write things down.
posted by something something at 6:56 AM on September 10, 2012 [1 favorite]


Gods, yes. After years of fighting I finally realized I could use a properly bound Blueline Notebook.
posted by clvrmnky at 7:04 AM on September 10, 2012


My mother once accidentally bought a pair of left-handed scissors. I found them in the crafts bin when I was about ten and I put them on my right hand, having learned by then to suffer through badly handling scissors rather than murdering my left hand. It was a familiar feeling, but on the wrong hand.
"These are left-handed scissors!" I shouted. "When did you get these for me?"
"Um ... yeah," she said. "I got those for you. You can have them now."
"You didn't, really. You just bought scissors and it turned out they hurt like hell when you used them, didn't you?"
"... yeah," she said.
"Well, now you know," I said. "That's what it feels like to be a lefty all the time. You know how I always talk about how it hurts to use the regular scissors?"
"I thought you were just whining," she said.
"Well, I wasn't. I'm tempted to hide all the other scissors from you so you have to use the lefty scissors so you have to know what it's like, but I won't," I said. "I'll be nice. I'm keeping these."

Decades later, I still have them. My wife had a similar so-that's-what-it's-like experience with them when we got married, & now all our scissors are ambidextrous.
posted by gauche at 7:13 AM on September 10, 2012 [5 favorites]


I am starting to feel bad for my left-handed daughter. I did buy her a left-handed nib for a fountain pen this year, though, so there's that. I'll get the scissors on the way home today!!
posted by theredpen at 7:20 AM on September 10, 2012


Oh, yeah, and all you lefty shooters, a lot of bullpups can be swapped to left-eject; many others bottom- or front-eject.
posted by gauche at 7:25 AM on September 10, 2012


Your car seems to be backwards.

I don't think the author who wrote "Measuring cups show you the stupid metric side" was trying too hard to be internationally relevant.
posted by John Cohen at 7:27 AM on September 10, 2012 [3 favorites]


Your car seems to be backwards.

Ha, I once drove a stick-shift rental car in the UK. The first 100 times I wanted to shift, I slammed my right hand into the door.
posted by A dead Quaker at 7:48 AM on September 10, 2012 [3 favorites]


My husband and I are both lefties, though our son is a righty. Imagine the lightbulb moment when we realized we couldn't say "here, use my old mitt!" when he played baseball.
posted by Lucinda at 7:48 AM on September 10, 2012


Jason over at Barefoot Running University notes that a lot of prominent barefoot runners are left-handed. His theory is that lefties more often have to hack the world to make it work for them & are therefore more open to non-traditional solutions.
posted by gauche at 7:49 AM on September 10, 2012 [2 favorites]


I'm not sure if this is a left-handed thing, or a way-I-hold-cards thing.

Came in here to say that! I'm pretty sure it's a left-handed thing, and I do it with playing cards as well, actually. As in, it is possible to hold cards upside down if you fan them left-handed, which I can't help but do. Even though it makes it really easy for someone to look over your shoulder.

Also, scissors. Scissors!
posted by likeatoaster at 7:52 AM on September 10, 2012


Since I mouse right-handed, I do enjoy having my dominant hand free while on the computer. In fact, it's so handy I'm a little surprised mouse-on-the-left didn't become the norm.
posted by sourwookie at 7:54 AM on September 10, 2012


I second the problem with Firearms. Buying a pump or auto shotgun is severely limited for the lefty, unless he enjoys the shells ejecting in his face. Sure, there are lefty versions available, but only in a few models and by a few manufacturers. If you go Browning or above, you can go bottom eject, which solves the problem - but then again, you're paying out the ass for a Browning. If you're just wanting a basic shotgun, the Remington 870 ( god bless em) still puts out a lefty at the same price as a righty.

I firmly believe this is why single shots are still in wide demand - left handed shooters give up on finding a pump and just buy a damn single.

also - I play the banjo - and finding a lefty banjo can be difficult. Gold Tone makes some decent entry levels, but other than that.... well, prepare to take out a second mortgage.
posted by bradth27 at 7:58 AM on September 10, 2012




what? that article just explains scissors - it doesn't turn anything into anything.
posted by desjardins at 8:30 AM on September 10, 2012


what? that article just explains scissors - it doesn't turn anything into anything.

I think you'll find that it turns the blades into you.
posted by Sys Rq at 8:42 AM on September 10, 2012


On the taboo thing: Once (in the early nineties) a Taiwanese guy I was working with saw me writing something. He asked me seriously, "Is something wrong with your right hand? Why are you writing with your left?" I said, "I'm left-handed." He looked at me as if I was writing with my foot.
posted by gubo at 8:59 AM on September 10, 2012


When you use your left hand, it doesn't feel like someone else.
posted by Kabanos at 9:01 AM on September 10, 2012 [2 favorites]


Ah, driving in Japan! I could shift with my left hand and drive with my left hand while I hung my right arm out the window. Heaven.
posted by zzazazz at 9:21 AM on September 10, 2012


Surgery and surgical instruments. (See the scissors problem, for example.) I know at least one more cross-dominant lefty* who became a right-handed surgeon because of it.

*not all lefties can do this, obviously, and I know fantastic left-handed surgeons.
posted by Uniformitarianism Now! at 9:23 AM on September 10, 2012


There is no real reason for scissors to be hand-specific. Lots of them aren't.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 9:27 AM on September 10, 2012


I'm a righty who's been mousing lefty for the past couple of years due to RSI issues. I can't do very fast or precise mousing with my left hand, but it's perfectly fine for web browsing and word processing and so forth (and I think the fact that I'm slowed down keeps my left hand from developing similar problems.) I have to avoid trackpad use -- I can't seem to use them with my non-dominant hand, but they're even worse for me than mousing is.

Count me among the people who uses the number pad often with my right hand -- but I have to dial the desk phone with my left hand, as the numbers are oriented differently, and my finger memory goes all wonky if I switch.
posted by asperity at 9:52 AM on September 10, 2012


My dad was left-handed, I'm left-handed, my son is left-handed. Son was a (lefty) fencer, which was an advantage for him. I've just given up on the scissors thing and learned to use them in my right hand. I mouse right-handed (because when I started using a mouse I never knew it could be set up to work left-handed), but I iron right-handed. For composition books, I start in the back (with the coil to the right) and just use one side of the paper. For a steno notebook (with the coil at the top), I use it upside down so the coil is at the bottom. I hate gel pens as they don't seem to work well with a left hand, but love smooth writing cheapie bic's and the old fashioned Flair felt tips (remember those?). I'd love to be able to knit, but I've never found anyone to teach me left-handed.
posted by SweetTeaAndABiscuit at 10:04 AM on September 10, 2012


A few years ago I realized that I apparently tie my shoes left-handedly. After 20+ years of tying my shoes, trying to do it the right handed way feels all wrong. My dad is the only lefty in my immediate family - guess I know which parent taught me how to tie my shoes...
posted by flod logic at 10:20 AM on September 10, 2012


D'oh, should've mentioned I'm right handed.
posted by flod logic at 10:21 AM on September 10, 2012


ceribus peribus: "he would make a few bucks on the side now and then selling left handed tees to this doctor who golfed left."

Conning money from an idiot is nothing to brag about.
posted by Bonzai at 10:27 AM on September 10, 2012


There is no real reason for scissors to be hand-specific. Lots of them aren't.

No, this is different than the ergonomic molding for right-handed fingers. When you use scissors, you are not just closing the lever, but also putting torque on the blades so that they shear against each other. When someone uses righty scissors in their left hand, the torque pulls the blades slightly apart from each other and they don't cut. This is a real problem with cheap school "safety" scissors that are pretty wiggly and loose to begin with. Less so with Fiskars or similar well-made scissors, though repeatedly stressing the pivot with the wrong torque will wear them out.

On the other hand (ha!), I've used lefty scissors in my right hand without much trouble. You just pull with your thumb and push with your fingers while you are cutting. Easy peasy. So quit complaining, lefties!
posted by stopgap at 11:04 AM on September 10, 2012 [1 favorite]


I had the opposite scissor experience growing up. For whatever reason (free government surplus? purchasing mishap?) my elementary school had big boxes filled with mostly left-handed scissors. We had to scrounge and fight for the few right-handed ones. The one or two lefties in the class would snicker smugly as they cut perfect construction paper hearts or stars.
posted by mbrubeck at 11:27 AM on September 10, 2012 [2 favorites]


I used lefty scissors in school but I've just used regular scissors as an adult and don't have any difficulty at all. Hm.
posted by something something at 12:22 PM on September 10, 2012


What's with the 'Bonking elbows with a righty at the dinner table'? I don't understand this.

Eating_utensil_etiquette#American_style


What does that have to do with it? If I'm using my knife in my left hand and fork in my right European style I'm still just as likely to bump elbows with a righty. It's the cutting with the left hand that causes problems, not the style of eating. All lefties should use the knife in their left hand whether they eat American style or not. When you do that at a crowded table at the same time a righty is using their knife, you bump elbows.

The biggest issues for me have been: working on a factory line in which all the machines are optimized for right-handed use, and stupid things like ladles with a pouring lip on one side or ice cream scoops with a spring lever. Can openers I just use backward. Haven't had a problem with string trimmers- professional gas equipment usually has an adjustable lower handle. I right mouse, left trackpad or stylus, cut ambidextrously, and have no problems with driving stick (really, having the dominant hand on the wheel makes plenty of sense to me).
posted by oneirodynia at 1:04 PM on September 10, 2012


Always wanted to start a band called The Right Handed Scissor Conspiracy.

Only if you promise to go on tour with these guys.
posted by MiltonRandKalman at 2:02 PM on September 10, 2012


It's the cutting with the left hand that causes problems,

This hasn't been totally my experience; I'm a righty, and if I'm seated next to a lefty at a small table, we will indeed bang elbows sometimes. When I use both a knife and fork, I use the European style (because I lived there at a formative age, I guess) it's not much of a problem, but lots of food only needs forking and not knifing. Then you risk elbow-banging.
posted by rtha at 2:24 PM on September 10, 2012


>My mother was born left-handed, and had the misfortune to go to elementary school in the 1950s, where the teachers would smack her left hand if she used it for anything they felt she should use her right hand for. She learned quickly enough, but can't use her left hand for anything.

Same thing here with my dad, in elementary school on the Gulf Coast of Texas in the 1940s. In his case, the teacher tied his left hand to his chair to keep him from using it. One come-to-Jesus talk later -- courtesy of Dad's mother, who'd been a teacher herself --

>I think it's telling that when you know someone who's close to ambidextrous (like my dad), they're nearly always a natural lefty. They've just been made to accommodate so frequently that they've become better with their non-dominant hand than righties.

Lefty here, with a lefty father whose own dad was ambidextrous (I have no memory of my grandfather -- he died when I was a toddler -- but I am told that when he was a sportswriter, he could roll a cigarette with one hand and type with the other). I'll have to ask Dad if his father was one of these uber-versatile lefties who had had to yield to the right-handed world order.

>The word ambisinister is interesting. It means clumsy or unskillful with both hands. It's the opposite of ambidextrous. Of course, "sinister" has etymological roots in left-handedness and "dexterity" has its roots in right-handedness.

Then there's cack-handed or, in French, main de merde: inept or clumsy, and, by extension, left-handed:
The direct association is with cack, another fine Old English term, for excrement or dung. Cachus was Old English for a privy, and both words come from Latin cacare, to defecate.

It almost certainly comes from the very ancient tradition, which has developed among peoples who were mainly right-handed, that one reserved the left hand for cleaning oneself after defecating and used the right hand for all other purposes. At various times this has been known in most cultures. Some consider it rude even to be given something using the left hand. So to be left-handed was to use the cack hand or be cack-handed.

There are similar terms in other languages, such as the French main de merde for somebody awkward or butter-fingered.
The French word for "left" is gauche, which also means "awkward" or "lacking in social graces."

The medical term mancinism "refers to the state of being left-handed. The term originated from the Latin term mancus which means crippled." In Italian, mancino means "left-handed," and the phrase tiro mancino is equivalent in English to "dirty trick."

I could (and usually would) go on, but I've got to go to work ... so I'll leave you all with this link (scroll down to find the word for "left-handed" in languages from Arabic to Vietnamese), and an anecdotal worldwide survey of unflattering words or phrases meaning "left-handed."
posted by virago at 2:49 PM on September 10, 2012 [2 favorites]


I'm a leftie who uses cutlery in the right-handed European style except for when you only need one utensil (eg fork, spoon). In my experience the danger of banging elbows is greatest when eating something with a single utensil, and I'm using my left hand whilst my neighbour is using their right. Plus reaching for the water glass, buttering bread *, fidgeting with the napkin, etc etc. If I'm not lucky enough to be able to make sure there's no-one sat on my left, then the meal is spent with elbows tucked in as far as possible to the point of discomfort, trying to time each cutting action or mouthful so I can fall into antiphase with my neighbour, and neither of us winds up with food in our laps.


* Especially for buttering bread. The side plate sits to the left of the main plate, so a rightie buttering their bread is holding the butterknife in their right hand in front of their own place setting, so they're not invading anyone else's space and they have plenty of room to maneuver. With the bread on the sideplate already on the far left border of my place setting, my butterknife has to move even farther to the left of that to be able to get an angle suitable for transferring butter, which sends my elbow even farther still toward my neighbour's territory. When dining chairs are also pushed close together on top of that, it's just safer to eat bread without butter rather than risk accidentally stabbing my dinner companion.
posted by talitha_kumi at 2:52 PM on September 10, 2012


Whoops, the sentence should read:
One come-to-Jesus talk later -- courtesy of Dad's mother, who'd been a teacher herself -- Dad's left hand was freed and his instructor stopped trying to make him use his right hand.
posted by virago at 2:54 PM on September 10, 2012


There is a wonderful book by Dr. Charles McManus, Right Hand, Left Hand which deals on the whole with asymmetry in humans and other organisms/systems, ending with a fascinating study of handedness. Whether or not handedness is linked to, for instance, identical twins, brain asymmetry, people whose organs are arranged in mirror-image to the norm; whether left-handedness confers any sort of evolutionary advantage and with what frequently it occurs in populations; stuff like that, all fascinating.

Hard science explained with such clarity even non-scientific me could follow his tangents off in astro-physics and molecular biology. There's a website but I can't recommend the book highly enough.
posted by glasseyes at 3:35 PM on September 10, 2012


Whether or not handedness is linked to, for instance, identical twins, brain asymmetry

I should check that out: I'm an identical twin (although since my twin died shortly after birth I'll never know whether he would've been right-handed, in opposition to my left-handedness*), and I'm a brain mirror twin in that my speech centres (Broca's & Wernicke's Areas) are on the right rather than the usual left, a fact deduced by the doctors running tests following my stroke-like experience with a hemiparetic migraine, where I went numb on my left side and developed rapidly increasing aphasia (a matter of minutes) which went into complete inability to say the words I wanted to say, lasting several hours before it wore off, with no apparent permanent effects.

I was at work, felt the increasing numbness, went to the company nurse, started trying to explain that "I feel numb on my left side", but it came out as "I feel numb on my second side", which startled me, and soon thereafter every word came out wrong, although I could think clearly, understand questions, follow instructions (to try to write what I wanted to say; no dice there, either: picked up the pen and tried to write but couldn't do it), etc. (There was a ST:DS9 episode where a contagion of aphasia breaks out on the station that I could completely relate to, although there I believe the sufferers' comprehension was also affected. Perhaps the writers didn't research aphasia thoroughly enough, or there's another kind that also affects comprehension.)

*(My mom, also lefthanded, has mentioned a theory she read somewhere that all left-handers had at some point (early in gestation?) a right-handed twin that didn't develop further (that zygote reabsorbed into the mother's tissues?) - which would make each and every lefty technically a twin. No idea how one would go about confirming such a theory.)
posted by Philofacts at 4:52 PM on September 10, 2012 [1 favorite]


>*(My mom, also lefthanded, has mentioned a theory she read somewhere that all left-handers had at some point (early in gestation?) a right-handed twin that didn't develop further (that zygote reabsorbed into the mother's tissues?) - which would make each and every lefty technically a twin.

My grandmother always thought that my father, who is left-handed, had had a twin. When she was pregnant with him, she experienced heavy bleeding, uterine cramps, and pelvic pain, and thought she had miscarried. But as time went on, she realized that she still felt life, and, happily for the future virago, eventually gave birth to my dad.

(My grandmother had had multiple miscarriages and was, sadly, quite familiar with the symptoms. My father was the only child she carried to term.)
posted by virago at 5:38 PM on September 10, 2012 [1 favorite]


Also I feel like some activities are not inherently handed and are done a particular way out of tradition. I am a righty and I always thought it was weird that in guitar playing you fret with your non dominant hand and strum with your dominant hand, because to me fretting requires much more precision and dexterity than strumming. I always wondered why lefties would bother getting a lefty guitar when they could enjoy all their dominant hand precision in fretting.

The same with continental style knife and fork eating, having grown up in the US I was always of the cut first then switch fork over to right hand school; when I adopted two-handed eating my girlfriend (now wife) had to keep correcting me because I would cut with my left hand and put food into my mouth with the fork in the right. For a very long time (and a little bit today) eating with the fork in the left hand just felt awkward and unnatural whereas simply hacking away at food with a knife didn't require much dexterity.
posted by pravit at 8:47 PM on September 10, 2012


I always wondered why lefties would bother getting a lefty guitar when they could enjoy all their dominant hand precision in fretting.

Strumming is easy, but picking and finger-picking take a lot of dexterity. I'm a lefty who learned right-handed guitar, and to this day I'm dreadfully awful with a pick despite focused practice to improve. I will never play surf guitar well :(
posted by qxntpqbbbqxl at 9:10 PM on September 10, 2012


Another lefty who hates using scissors (good ones are ergonomic for righties, and crap ones aren't handed but they're crap) and has now learned why she's so incompetent at cutting a loaf of bread. I wonder if this is why I struggle with tearing off cling-film from a roll too? I like being able to write and mouse at the same time though, that's pretty useful these days.

And anything where I don't expect to use the skill frequently, e.g. most sports, I usually just learn right-handed so I can be taught by whoever is nearest and not bother about being awkward. This backfired with knitting though, which I turned out to love. Now I frequently drop stitches because I let go of the right-hand needle too often and it slips out. But the thought of trying to learn it all again with my left hand just seems like too much hassle.
posted by harriet vane at 9:33 PM on September 10, 2012


My Little League coach taught me right-handed batting for two years before he suddenly realized I used a left-handed glove. This was turned into a formidable weapon when I would enter the batter's box for a left-handed at bat and the outfielders would scatter to right field. Imagine their surprise when the hit sailed over short stop or third base. That still feels good.

I worked very hard from a young age to have good left-handed penmanship - my dad basically said, "You'd better be ready the day you go to kindergarten, or they'll start messing with you." He was right. I always felt bad for the kids who had to hold their pencils upside-down and drag across the page.

Mousing right handed took practice, but I got it down. When Photoshop came out, I started mouse-drawing a lot with my right hand, and it "freed up" my normally tight, illustrative style. Now I have a choice when I start a project, depending on spec, about whether they want something illustrative or more impressionistic, and it works out well.

Scissors have an anvil and a blade. The anvil stays stationary on the work surface, while the blade travels up and down to make the cut. If you're right handed, you can watch the inside of the blade working, and stay on a line. If you cut left-handed with right-handed scissors, you have to get your line of sight on the other side of the blade to watch, and it's uncomfortable and inaccurate. So this really is a thing, never mind the uncomfortable molded grips working against you at every stroke. Scissors don't really work when you're trying to mash the anvil up onto the blade.
posted by halfbuckaroo at 4:11 AM on September 11, 2012 [2 favorites]


I always wondered why lefties would bother getting a lefty guitar when they could enjoy all their dominant hand precision in fretting.

Strumming is easy, but picking and finger-picking take a lot of dexterity. I'm a lefty who learned right-handed guitar, and to this day I'm dreadfully awful with a pick despite focused practice to improve. I will never play surf guitar well :(


Perhaps it's because I'm fairly ambidetxtr- um, scratch that word, let's say "equi-handed", eh? - at a number of things, including (right-handed) guitar, but I find picking not that bad. (And as I mentioned above, my right hand is actually more nimble on piano, no doubt from training that historically favours the right.) I've never done much finger-picking. (So much for a career in folk music.)

My picking would, however probably be more precise if I were right-handed. I study Indian music on fretless guitar (tuned in an Indian way) and the picking patterns ("Da-Ra" for the down and up strokes, which are called "bols" just as the various ways of hitting a table are called "bols") are often highly specified, for reasons well worked out over hundreds of years in that tradition, and I still have some trouble with them.

On the other hand (heh), I'm glad to be a lefty for the sake of my intonation skill on the fretless neck. I use the fingernails of my index and middle fingers to stop the strings, just as is done on the sarod, with the other two, touching with the fingertips as on regular guitar, only for quick passing notes, hammer-ons and pull-offs. After twelve years I think my intonation is actually better than some string players I know. (It helps to have sympathetic strings which ring out when you hit the aimed-for note frequency precisely; in my case I'm using software written by a friend that gives me finely tuneable virtual symps in the laptop; a custom instrument with actual symps will be finished for me this fall.) I'm at the point where I can often play with my eyes closed.
posted by Philofacts at 6:06 AM on September 11, 2012


Has anyone ever made a left-handed piano?
posted by Devils Rancher at 6:17 AM on September 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


Joe Zawinul supposedly played an inverted keyboard sometimes.
posted by stubby phillips at 7:02 AM on September 11, 2012


Joe Zawinul supposedly played an inverted keyboard sometimes.

Wow, I'd love to see a cite for that.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 7:07 AM on September 11, 2012


Actually, I think there's one here!
posted by flapjax at midnite at 7:09 AM on September 11, 2012


I'm the only lefty in my family: all my siblings and both parents are right-handed.... we still refer to accomodating seating so nobody gets bonked in the eye at dinner as planning for my 'magic elbow'. Over the years, I've acquired lefty scissors and can openers, but I hate Hate HATE those stupid credit card readers --- they're either bolted down where it's impossible to sign them or, as the article says, the damn cord is too short to tilt them the other direction..... at this point, I don't even bother trying to actually sign them: I just scribble something.

In first grade, my right-handed teacher used to whack my hand because of my leftiness; you know how righties often lean towards thier left to write, and lefties lean to their right? Decades later I still remember the day that evil woman yelled out to the class that I was only leaning to my right like that "because all left-handers like to copy off right-handers"..... it didn't endear me to her any when I piped up with "I'm not copying from him, he's dumb!" Caught me some extra whacks for that one.
posted by easily confused at 8:04 AM on September 11, 2012 [4 favorites]


Yes, the Arp (and, I think, the modular Moogs like the one my HS music teacher had) could be inverted. A great way to come up with new lines you might not otherwise.

You can invert any MIDI keyboard with a Transform function in Logic. It's a straightforward note number mapping. I tried it once for a piece where I had the regular line I was playing literally pitch-mirrored for a harmony.
posted by Philofacts at 8:05 AM on September 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


(btw, in my previous post re picking, that should be "tabla", not "table". effin' autocorrect...)
posted by Philofacts at 8:10 AM on September 11, 2012


Aha! Actual left-handed pianos!
posted by Devils Rancher at 8:13 AM on September 11, 2012


Does it bother any other lefties that the text on the shaft of your pen or pencil is upside down? For example, this purple pen I've got here says "uniball VISION ELITE" if you hold it in your right hand. Flip it to your left? Gobbledegook!

(;
posted by easement1 at 10:43 AM on September 11, 2012


Bonzai: "ceribus peribus: "he would make a few bucks on the side now and then selling left handed tees to this doctor who golfed left."

Conning money from an idiot is nothing to brag about.
"

Agree to disagree.

Circle takes the square for the win.
posted by Samizdata at 11:38 AM on September 11, 2012


There is no real reason for scissors to be hand-specific. Lots of them aren't.

I suspect you mean the handles of the scissors are often not hand-specific, but the upper blade will still be on the right, so they're still technically "right-handed" and pose the same problems.
posted by Kabanos at 11:52 AM on September 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


Does it bother any other lefties that the text on the shaft of your pen or pencil is upside down?

:: looks at pencil ::

Well, not until now! Had never noticed before. Now it will piss me off forever :)
posted by harriet vane at 10:13 PM on September 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


So you'll spend up big on my left-handed pencils kickstarter?
posted by pompomtom at 10:27 PM on September 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


I can kinda understand the elbowing-while-eating issue. I'm right handed, but left footed. I used to snowboard. Whenever I was sharing a chairlift with a bunch of right-footers (which was always), I'd always try to get the left-most seat so that my snowboard dangling from my foot didn't get tangled up with the righties' boards, which were dangling in the opposite diagonal to mine.
posted by Diag at 7:53 AM on September 14, 2012


I hate Hate HATE those stupid credit card readers --- they're either bolted down where it's impossible to sign them or, as the article says, the damn cord is too short to tilt them the other direction

You can usually sign those with your fingertip.
posted by stopgap at 1:23 PM on September 14, 2012


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