Monday, 6 September 2010


One of the things I actually like about myself (the other two are being tall and being blonde) is being left-handed. OK, so it's not that uncommon, but it is a slight quirk which marks me apart from many other people. It adds an interesting dimension to my life, and most right-handed people can't imagine the struggles involved in managing with everyday items. For example:
  • My mother bought me a very pretty floral oven glove. I put it on my left hand and burned myself getting something out of the oven because all the padding was on the other side.
  • My kettle has a little light on it to let you know when it's switched on, and a gauge to show how much water is in it. With the handle to the right (for right handed people) you can see both the light and the gauge, but with the handle to the left, where I naturally have it for easy of filling and pouring the kettle, they face towards the wall.
  • My ironing board has a wire attachment to hold the flex of the iron and stop it getting in the way as I'm ironing. Natually it is on the wrong side, and pokes me in the stomach as I do the ironing, while the flex of the iron goes wherever it likes.

That's before you even get me started on tin openers, pastry slices and cake forks.

Two of my three children are left handed and it's interesting watching them face the same problems learning to write as I did. Writing from left to right means that your hand covers the letters you have just written which makes neatness and accuracy a challenge. It means a very dirty ink-covered hand at the end of the day, and smudged writing. On the plus side, both Gwen and I can write backwards (mirror writing) as easily as we can write forwards. Ceri is only 5 but it looks as though she will too, given than she writes her name backwards as often as not.

Sadly it seems that left-handed people live an average of seven years less than right-handed people. However, since I also live the LDS Word of Wisdom (no tea, coffee, alcohol or tobacco) and that's been shown make people live seven years longer (what do you mean it just feels like longer?) I reckon I've evened the odds.

Left handed people are also reputedly more creative. If true, this is yet another reason why I am proud and happy to be of the sinister persuasion. Who knows whether I would ever have had a novel published had I been right-handed?


  1. A good source for anything left-handed (from oven mitts to cake forks to things that even a lefty may never have imagined were available in left-hand versions) is

    For teaching young left-handers to write, I recommend the book/CD-ROM series LEFT HAND WRITING SKILLS by Christopher Marshall, which has some information/ordering links on the "Lefties' Lounge" page of my web-site:
    (The links include a link to download some free sample pages.)

  2. Anna: When Braxton was younger he decided to teach himself to write left-handed! (I have no idea why, he just wanted to! Sometimes he will write English with one hand and Japanese with the other--at the same time!!) I did order things for him from that website that Kate mentioned ( Pretty neat site!