I have lived with a left handed person for almost my entire life. Except for the eight years after my sister was married and before I was married I have cohabited with a lefty. That is 39 years of behavioural observation. Unlike Jane Goodall and her beloved chimps I have never taken notes and honestly I’m not all that observant. I can happily report that while lefties are somewhat different I have never witnessed aberrant cannibalistic behaviour.
I remember watching in amazement as my sister would write a report for school as her hand would drag across the page, her pinkie delicately smearing the fresh ink. She had permanent ink on her pinkie. Her one imperfection, as I saw it then. As intrigued as I was by her method of writing I was equally horrified by her knife manipulation. I still, to this day, hate to watch her handle a knife. Every time I see her cut or peel something in that weird leftie manner I’m sure that this is the time that she’s going to slice off a digit. She also has a different way of viewing the world than I do. She likes it. Is this because she is using the right side of her brain and I’m using the left?
My husband is another one of those lefties. Although I know it has nothing to do with politics and really we are on the same page politically how come I want to say one of those ‘pinko lefties’? While I am quite comfortable with his knife manipulation there are a couple of things that he does which are awkward to me. I really am quite a laid back person, no one who knows me would use the words uptight or anally retentive about me but I do have my quirks. I hang my shirts and jackets in a certain direction. I never noticed this until sharing a closet with my husband. He hangs his stuff in the opposite direction. I don’t like it. I’m not going to say anything about it and I’m certainly not going to rehang anything that he has hung up, it just bugs me, a little. He also cuts a loaf of bread from the wrong end. Let me be more specific we cut the same end he just puts the loaf to the right of the knife while I would put it to the left. No biggie, just different. Now the next one you would think is impossible but it’s not. He slices cakes and pies moving in the wrong direction. Frozen, you might say, they are circles how can there be a wrong direction? He cuts clockwise, righties slice counter-clockwise. It doesn’t wreck the dessert (G-d forbid) it’s just weird to watch. He also thinks with the other side of his brain than I do. I know that this is true because besides the fact that he actually loves math we often have no idea what the other person is talking about. We always clear it up but not before I can think to myself, “ah lefites, they’re from Mars righties are from Venus”.
I have a few minutes to myself right now. I think I’ll go rearrange his desk so that he has to reach for everything from the wrong side.