The South Paw survivors

lefthand 1
courtesy internet

13th August is the international Left handers day.

“Two and a half thousand left-handed people are killed every year using things made for right-handed people.”
― Maggie O’FarrellThe Vanishing Act of Esme Lenno

Being a South Paw some forty years ago was a nightmare, I am still living it. Sharing this may be a good way of getting things out of my system.

Born to a Left handed father and a conventional-conservative-fit the box mother the perils started very young.

left handed
image courtesy internet

My father coped with this left-right business since he had a tendency to being ambidextrous. Maybe left to myself I would have become ambidextrous too without the trauma.

My earliest memory is being asked to eat with the right hand, and I got into the habit of gulping food, I was confused and clumsy with my right. I would then be hungry at odd times so I got into the habit of snacking. This issue got resolved when I turned eleven and my maternal grandmother returned from Delhi, she put her foot down and let me use my left hand, like my father did and I started eating with a spoon, so that others would not be offended.

image courtesy internet
image courtesy internet

Then came school, at Padma Sheshadri in Chennai my using my left hand was not an issue. But when I came to Manipal, Mrs.Premlatha whoever yes (I am naming her to shame her that is the only way I can find closure.) used to cane me on my palm, when I still had issues she would lock me up in the dark room. I wonder how many other children she has meted this punishment to.

Kids refuse to share desks with left handers d because it they cannot handle the dynamics. I know parents who have requested that their children be moved away from the left handed kid. To me learning to cope with left-handed partner seems like a great way to learn inclusion.

Small things the world is tuned to right hander’s, it was a relief in dental college that our batch had seven lefthanders so Dr.K.S.Bhat seriously considered re-orienting a chair for lefthanders, I do not remember if it was eventually done but I know I did not have issues. Simple things like driving on the left, has evolved from horse riding where the riders used the right hand to whip.

image courtesy internet
image courtesy internet

Then came the hurdle there were people who would not eat what I cooked because I cooked with my left. Believe I have learnt to cook with my right hand since.

Whew!! That was catharsis.

It’s not just me, but we are  10% of the world population out there.

Folklore and superstitions are associated with left hand with the devil. There was another belief that said evil spirits lurk over the left shoulder I wonder why? Considering that the heart is in the left. Just look at the list of superstitions itch in the right palm means you are going to receive money while if the left itches it means you are going to give away money.  While the left eye twitching is supposed to be a good omen.  When you give or receive money always use the right I have had people going ballistics when I a legitimate left hander use my left.

The ancient Zuni tribe seems to be only tribe with its act right they consider being left handed a sign of good look, because the left is older and wiser.

When it comes to religion Hinduism has a whole chunk of them, beginning with way you serve and which foot forward. All rituals are performed with the right unless they are associated with funeral rites.

Just think about it, the officials in Mensa the high IQ society believe as many as 20% of their members are left-handed,

Agatha Christie always has one incident where mirroring is a part. Anyway here is to South Paw Survivors. May our tribe find our rightful place under the sun, with monsters like Premalatha being slayed.

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