plonkee money an english-er's thoughts on personal finance

May 28, 2007

the hidden costs of being a leftie

Filed under: plonkee — plonkee @ 11:36 am

You probably don’t know it, but I’m a leftie. I’m very proud of my left-handedness and, of course, grateful not to live in an age where I would haave my hand tied behind my back in an effort to make me write ‘normally’. However, being left-handed has its disadvantages, people feel that they can comment on your handwriting skills (apparently I have good handwriting ‘for a left-handed person’), I find it difficult to use scissors neatly and I can’t wind-up a watch whilst still wearing it. Every time I learn a new activity – like rock-climbing for example – the instructor always complains that left-handers make everything more difficult. And don’t get me started on those funny desks attached to chairs, if you’re in the wrong-handed one its almost impossible to make notes.

Being left-handed can be expensive. Ideally, if you want to learn to cut things out neatly, you need to use left-handed scissors which are not all that common. Contrary to popular belief, it is impossible to make scissors that work just as well when you are cutting with your right hand or your left, all scissors are handed. Serrated knives are often right-handed, making cutting straight (and so missing your fingers) more difficult. One of my hobbies is calligraphy. Left-handed nibs and instruction books are difficult to find and more expensive than their right-handed counterparts. I don’t play golf, but left-handed golf clubs aren’t cheaper than right-handed ones. And I’ve never seen left-handed dessert forks, although right-handed ones are common.

Now you may think that this is fair, since left-handed people are a minority. I’ll agree with you on that one. But us lefties make up a significant minority and yet left-handed equipment is not all that common on the high street. And if I use right-handed equipment I either use it incorrectly in my left-hand which is often not possible, or I use it correctly in my right-hand which is not as dextrous and so tends to make a hash of things. So I need to spend more time sourcing items and pay extra to get stuff shipped from specialist stores.

Left-handers get a raw and expensive deal.


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