A couple of years ago I bought my husband two Villeroy & Boch china cups for an anniversary gift. (According to Hallmark and Wikipedia, china is the traditional 20th anniversary gift.)
I chose these cups because they were simple, unique, and signified the romance of the two of us enjoying a quiet morning coffee together. Before we had children, our Sunday morning ritual was to spend the morning in bed – reading the paper, working crossword puzzles, drinking strong coffee, munching on fresh bagels, and listening to Frank Sinatra.
The gift of two cups was my way of letting him know that some day, when we’re no longer awakened at 6am by little girls wanting us to put cartoons on TV, when we’re not trying to rouse a soporific teen to get dressed for church, when we’re not trying to make up for the previous week’s sleep deprivation…some day he’s still going to be the guy I want to read bits of newspaper articles to and drink morning coffee with.
I quickly learned, however, that these cups, like the kitchen scissors, the can opener, the corkscrew, were made for a right-handed person. I’m a lefty. It’s actually impossible to hold these cups in your left hand and sip without dribbling.
Studies show that only 7-10% of the population is left-handed, and more men than women. Until I started working in high tech, I was always the lone lefty in a group. It was sometimes inconvenient, but I liked being different. (In a high tech company, I can sit in a meeting and notice that at least four people around the table are left-handed.)
What’s bad about being left-handed other than ink on your palm and the inability to teach your right-handed children how to use chopsticks? Some studies have shown that lefties are more likely to be schizophrenic, alcoholic, delinquent, and dyslexic. They’re also more likely to die young and get into accidents.
What are the benefits of being left-handed? It can be advantageous when you’re going through a toll-booth! And … well, that’s about it.
As for me, I’ll stick with the right-handed china. After all, it leaves my left hand free to work on the crossword puzzle. And I plan many, many more years of coffee and crosswords with my husband.
P.S. Famous lefties include:
- Four of the five most recent U.S. presidents (Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, George H.W. Bush, Ronald Reagan)
- M.C. Escher, Michelangelo, and Leonardo da Vinci
- Paul McCartney and Paul Simon
- Larry Bird, Jimmy Connors, and Babe Ruth
- Countless actors (watch closely the next time you’re at the movies or watching TV and observe what hand your favorite actor uses to eat or write)