10 Things That Really Annoy Left-Handed People

01/03/2016 10:10 AM AEDT | Updated 15/07/2016 12:51 PM AEST
The Simpsons

I will admit that being left-handed makes us feel a little more special -- even superior, dare we say -- to our right-handed friends. Making up just 10 percent of the population, we're told so often how creative, intelligent and talented we must be that we like to believe it. And while it might be true, it does get a bit awkward when people find out you can't draw to save your life and you dropped maths in Year 11 because numbers just aren't your thing.

Being the forgotten 10 percent, we lefties like to think we're a bit like unicorns, prancing around with our heightened sense of creativity and flair -- but much of this lefty smugness is due to the fact that part of us secretly HATES being left-handed.

Here's why.

1. You can't use normal pens

Mention this to any left-handed friend and they will no doubt begin an unrestrained tirade damning pens and pen manufacturers to the fiery depths of hell. Take the ballpoint pen, for example. When a right-handed person uses a ballpoint pen, they are pulling the pen to the right in a smooth motion, with the ball nib facing away from the travel direction.

Left-handed people, on the other hand, are awkwardly pushing the pen to the right and the nib into the paper, causing the ink to 'jam' and become interrupted. If you've ever noticed a left-handed person write a sentence, then scribble profusely on spare paper, it's because we're trying to get the pen to do it's flipping job.

Much like ballpoint pens, most ink pens or -- dare I mention -- fountain pens (*shudder*) can also kindly get stuffed. They smudge and are impossible to use unless you're proficient at magically writing while hovering above the paper. And if you're leaning towards being OCD, the sight of the upside-down pen brand inscription on the side of the pen will niggle at you all day long.

2. You unwittingly print on your hand a copy of everything you write

While right-handers have no trouble at all because their own hand is clean free from the words they've just written, left-handers have the constant struggle of having their palm slide exasperatingly over every, single, word.

Barring a few great pens (all hail, uni ball Signo gel pens), all regular pens are too slow-drying to not be copied onto the side of your hand and then consequently printed and smudged onto every other subsequent word. It's a game of cat and mouse, with your own hand chasing word after word, tormenting you with smudgy reminders of your own incompetence.


3. You write upside down (or sideways) to compensate for being a human photo copier

You might have seen some lefties write with their hand contorted around the paper, their pens strangled in an attempt to fool them into thinking they are being held in the right hand. Some might even turn their paper sideways to combat the smudgies. Yes, it's awkward. Yes, we look stupid. Leave us alone.

Not all left-handed people write like this -- of the left-handers I know (which isn't many) we write with our pinky fingers just above or below the sentence we're writing.


4. Ring binders are our idea of hell

Even writing this makes me squirm. Honestly, if you want to torture a person who is left-handed, just say that word over and over. Binders, binders. Those bulky, spring-loaded circular rings are made to enrage us -- impeding our ability to put our writing hand on the paper. So if you see someone writing on the back of the paper on the left hand side of the binder folder, just empathise with the suffering they are enduring.

5. Scissors are not your friend

Right-handed people will tell you they're exactly the same, but they're not. Scissors are made for right-handers.

Think about a pair of regular scissors. When held in your right hand, the position of your thumb pushes the blades together. In the left hand, however, your thumb is naturally pushing the bottom blades away from each other, resulting in uneven lines or, if they're a particularly shitty pair of scissors, an inability to cut at all.

This same theory goes for kitchen utensils, measuring cups, hand tools and knives, which are all designed for right-handers. Kill me now.


6. Finding a good pen gives you a buzz that lasts for hours

Adrenalin junkies have sky diving, we lefties have finding a good pen.

You walk into Officeworks, apprehensively approaching the rows upon rows of pens, knowing that you probably won't find the pen of your dreams. But sometimes it happens. You pick up a pen, scribble a few words on the doodling paper and wait to see the dreaded smudge or the deflating sight of ink on your hand. But it doesn't. And it give you a rush like no other.

Upon finding the pen, lefties are known to bulk buy it in every colour and nib size. Don't judge us, we just like good pens.

7. People assume you're creative and smart

This is all well and good if you are a creative and intelligent lefty, but if you're not, well, we've gotten used to replying 'no' to a handful of generic left-handed questions.

Are you an amazing painter? No. Then you must be very smart? No, not really. I like good pens, though. Oh, well then you must be a quick thinker? Nope. It took me 20 minutes to figure out what to have for breakfast this morning.

8. You wish Hebrew or Arabic was the national language so you could be superior at writing

The thought of writing in a place where everyone writes from right to left is a dream. No smudging, no ink photocopies on hands, no left-handed struggles. Instead, we've got obstructing spiral notebooks and upside-down can openers.

9. Playing a game of cards makes you want to scratch your eyes out

We just can't hold cards properly. If held in the right hand, the numbers are visible as they are printed on the right. When held in the left hand, the numbers are hidden. We can hold them as a right-hander does but it feels strange, like drinking something with numb gums after the dentist.

10. You feel like you've found your soul mate every time you come across another lefty

As though we are twins separated at birth, meeting another lefty is a special occasion. You can freely rant about all the aforementioned annoyances, share your latest pen discovery and revel in the delight of feeling a little bit special. Even if we're not.

lefthanded golf

This man is only playing left-handed to get out of trouble. But not all of us can dabble in left-handedness when it suits.

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