damn it feels good to be a gangster | The Life of K: damn it feels good to be a gangster

Thursday, June 15, 2006

damn it feels good to be a gangster

damn it feels good to be a gangster.. office space, anyone? anyone?

i was reminded of that song when i was thinking to myself that i'm so glad to be left-handed. i got hit by a pitch last night on the hand and thankfully nothing is broken and i have almost full use of it. my right hand i mean. and then i was thinking that being left-handed has so many perks. it is my belief that lefties are more capable at adapting to using their off hand than right-handed people.

and this isn't that we are more talented or gifted or able to use more of our brains, though i'm sure some lefties would say that is so. it is because the majority of society is right-handed. why? i'm not sure. but as a result, so many things are tailored to the righties. let me give you an example you probably have never EVER noticed: the writing on pens and toothbrushes and other hand-tools is all facing the correct way if held in the right hand. go check. i'm not lying. also, things like zippers on pants and coats and even how your workstation is set up - the mouse for example - all set up for right-handed people. i could go on.

i'm just fortunate that i wasn't born about 50 years before i was. my uncle is left-handed but he would get hit with a stick in school if he ever used his left hand. he is now very ambidextrous. so while this kind of punishment and narrow-mindedness is almost gone from people and society as a whole, there is still the residual ease for the right-handed people and the general lack of alternatives for those who are left-handed. ever try to find a left-handed baseball glove (i.e. one that goes on your right hand)? you'll find a hundred right-handed ones for every left-handed one. i'm talking from experience here.

being left-handed has also taught me to be more open to differences i see in people. it's not only about the physical handedness, it's also how people handle things, how they think and process events and problems. don't they say that we have two sides to our brains and that left-handed people are more artsy while right-handed people are more mathematical? i could have that reversed, but i don't think it's true anyways. i agree that different people approach problems (and life for that matter) using different methods but i do not think that it is one hundred percent related to what hand we prefer. i, for one, can be very vague and out there or i can see only black and white. sometimes i like that there are grey areas and sometimes they make me want to scream.

so while there are many things that i do exclusively with my right hand, i do them by choice and not because i can't do them with my left. you just get used to doing things a certain way and that happens to be things like brushing my teeth. i always use my right hand. does it mean i'm slower with my left? certainly. does it mean i can get by using my left? absolutely. this applies to everything i can think of except when it comes to cutting with scissors. i am completely useless with my left hand... ask my kindergarden teacher who would only let me use the green-handled scissors. i'm sure i got "plays well with others. needs work on her cutting skills. can stay in the lines while colouring" comments on my report cards. that's an example of the narrow-mindedness i was talking about.

i was also fortunate to have one right-handed parent and one left-handed parent. they let me decide which hand i prefered by placing all my tools (fork, spoon, crayon, whatever) in the middle. never on one side or the other. they did this with my brother as well. i became left-handed and he became right-handed. we are definitely different people but it stems from other things i'm sure.


  1. At my elementary school we once got school pens as part of a reward system (pass your test, get a gold star... etc) and we got to choose between left-handed and right-handed pens. I was amazed - I think that was my second exposure to handedness, right after the green scissors. I'm convinced that handedness is something that you can train yourself to do. I mean, look at these people that permanently lose arms and still get by. Obviously, the younger you are, the easier you learn these things. I'm definitely right handed, but I can use a computer mouse and eat with my left. However - at the risk of sounding sexist - I throw like a girl with my left arm.

    btw batman, you should probably get back to those TPS reports, otherwise your boss is gonna have to ask you to go ahead and come in on saturday...

  2. i'm really impressed that they had both. i've never seen a pen with the writing going the other way. not once.

    i think there are some things that you can never do as well with your off hand as with your dominant hand. you might learn to get by, but to be as quick and efficient.. i'm not too sure.

    what really amazes me is the people who have no hands/arms. they do everything with their feet (like write and make things and even crack eggs and cook!). now that is amazing.

  3. Captain UnderpantsJune 16, 2006 at 2:59 AM

    Alan, at the risk of sounding just like me, you WISH you threw like a girl with your left hand!!! :)

    Both my parents are lefties and it never occurred to me that I always had to turn the loaf of bread around to slice off a piece, just as they had to do after me, I suppose. It just was was it was. Both my sister and I are righties, though we can switch hit a fair bit as well with other stuff. I have a stronger left leg and I like to type with my left. etc etc.

    I heard an old interview witha dude born with no arms who is a great drummer, using his feet. He said that he never felt incredible or whatever because it's life. I was born without the ability to fly (knowing that society was not built around the assumption that I should know how, I understand) and I'm okay. People adapt because they have to, you know? It's definitley one of the cooler and more fabulous parts of human nature. :-) you guys take care xo

  4. m! good to hear from you! sounds like rob is in heaven in australia (=didgeland). did you lose ONE sandal? who does that??