The Life Of Being A Lefty...I'm Talking Handedness
I usually write with my left hand, therefore I am, for the most part considered to be left handed. I actually prefer to do just about everything else with my right hand though. I also can write with my right hand, and with both hands at the same time. So perhaps maybe I am cross-dominance or mixed-handedness with left hand dominant.
Slap whatever label you want on it, people still find it interesting when they realize I am writing left handed. Why the fascination you might ask? In the past, I was really fascinated when someone brought up my handedness, but not so much anymore. Well let us delve a little deeper into the odd interest society has had with what hand one uses for tasks.
For starters, only about 10 percent of people are naturally left handed, mostly men. Only about 1 percent are cross-dominant. For many years there was a stigma and repression of left handedness. My mother told me stories of growing up seeing children who were naturally left handed being forced to write with their right hand in school.
In society, many tools and machinery have been designed with right handedness in mind. Historically speaking, left handers have been considered unlucky, awkward, sinister, and malicious. The list actually goes on and on. I mean being right handed is "right". Needless to say, there are some disadvantages to being a lefty.
Disadvantages Of Being A Lefty
- Hand Shakes
- Writing (smudges)
- Elbows While Eating With Righties
- Spiral Notebooks and Three Ring Binders Against You Hand
Now don't go feeling sorry for left-handers. Lefties tend to be higher achievers due to the way a left-handers brain is structured. The brain increases its range of abilities to allow for left hand function. Some of the world most famous and brilliant minds are lefties. Taking a look at the list below, I am proud to be part of the left-handed club
15 Famous Lefties
- Albert Einstein
- Buzz Aldrin
- Bill Gates
- Barack Obama
- Ludwig van Beethoven
- Wolgang Mozart
- Mark Zuckerberg
- Oprah Winfrey
- Neil Armstrong
- Marie Curie
- Leonardo Da Vinci
- Winston Churchill
- H.G. Wells
- John F. Kennedy
I received a comment on a blog two years ago from "Glenn" regarding the historical perception of left handedness, and his words could not have been more accurate. Glenn said, "The French word 'gauche' is translated to left or left-handed in addition to awkward (and worse). In America, it is often used as a pejorative. As a lefty, I hardly ever give it a thought until I run into another lefty or someone points it out to me."
Being left handed can be a great conversation starter, and I do not believe there to be any negative association with being a lefty in today's society. Hopefully, ignorance and stereotypes based on the hand you write with are long gone. Or am I wrong? Do you have any experience with being a lefty, positive or negative? Please share!
Fun Fact - International Left-Handers Day is every August 13th.