People are curious creatures. Generally speaking we all look rather similar and have similar habits, traits, and vices, similar to how you would expect every bird to have feathers and every dog to hate cats. We do, however, have our subtle differences. Weather it be eye color, hair color, height, taste in food, or even the ability to cross one’s eyes, we all have some trait that we identify with. Personally, I identify with being left handed. I have been, and will continue to be considered strange for my identification with an appendage. It is not the fact that I have pride in my left-handedness that is unusual. Rather, it is the extreme degree to which I have pride that gives me this left-handed complex. When I tell people that I am proud of my left- handedness, they don’t really understand. Being left-handed is a huge part of who I am as a person.
On reason I think I feel so strongly about this trait is that I enjoy the opposition. Being left-handed can’t exactly hold up to some of the great racial or religious oppositions this world has seen, but I can well assure you that I get just as upset when I see a box full of right-handed scissors than if I were made to use a left handed-bathroom or were facing a crusade of anti-left-handed radicals. The left-handed populous has always been subjected to the biased nature of our society. Scissors and computer mice are widely known, but what about milk jugs? Indeed, an object that under normal circumstances has an innocent nature is designed to be held with ease and comfort by the right hand. When I notice things such as this, I don’t just pass it off as a minor inconvenience. No, rather, it is a personal assault on me as a human being and all that my left-handedness and I stand for. This may seem to be a grand exaggeration, but I really do have the deepest vendetta against milk jugs that any person can have against an inanimate object.
I don’t only associate with my own left-handedness but also with the left-handedness of others. When entering a room, some people habitually check for fire exits. Me, I check for other left handed people. There is no good reasoning behind it, but I still feel an inclination to like someone substantially more if I see them writing with their left hand or bearing a watch on their right. I somehow associate with these people knowing that they, like me, are unique among a vast host of right-oriented people.
This I believe: that being left-handed is one of the defining traits of who I am as a person. I believe in being unique in the way I hold my pencil. I believe in the way I resent right-handed tools. I believe in the dark smudge of lead and ink smeared onto my hand. I believe in being left-handed!
If you enjoyed this essay, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to This I Believe, Inc.