Anything Left-Handed > Left Handers Club > LHC Newsletters > LHC NL February 2011

Left Handers Club Newsletter – February 2011

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In this issue..

1. The advantages of being left-handed – Follow Up
2. Left-handed animals?
3. Lefty Book – The cartoon adventures of a frustrated left-hander
4. Left handed expressions


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1. The advantages of being left-handed

Last month we published a list of the top 10 advantages of being left handed and we had a lot of feedback with more ideas…

  • Left-handed people are smarter!! I'm left-handed and I often get straight A’s…and guess what?? 4 of my cousins are also left-handed and two of them also get good exam reports! This is year i was offered to go to my state's 2nd best achieved high school at first I was afraid that i would be considered different” because of my left-handedness but I was supprised that a lot of the students there are also left-handed!!.
  • Lefties have an excellent sense of direction and they do not get lost easily
  • Lefties are better at hand-eye co-ordination sports like table tennis

Use the link below to see our full article with links to the various bits of research to back these up and a chance to add your own advantages and comments.
Full article on advantages of being left-handed – click here to add your comments

2. Left-handed animals?

Parrot usinf left footRecent research reported by Dr Calum Brown of Macquarie University in Australia showed that some species of parrot such as the sulphur-crested cockatoo were entirely left-handed while others, including the king parrot, were mainly right-handed. The majority of parrots, including the budgie, galah and rainbow lorikeet – are ambidextrous.

”This is probably the first time we see some kind of mechanism trying to explain how handedness came about in the first place,” Dr Brown said. ”It's clearly linked to brain lateralisation. So the brain lateralisation determines eye lateralisation, which determines hand preferences.”

There have been lots of reports over the years about various animals showing hand preference and here is a brief summary:

  • Psychologists from Queen's University Belfast, who as part of their research played with 42 pet cats for weeks on end. They found that females are ‘right-handed' while toms favour the left.
  • Dog using left pawDogs are the same – until they are spayed or neutered, when the difference disappears, suggesting hormones play a role in left or right-handedness.
  • Dogs wag their tails to the right when relaxed and to the left when agitated.
  • Toads are mostly right-handed and pounce more quickly on morsels of food that enter their line of vision from their right.
  • Fish will have a preference to left or right when they dodge a predator – this is likely to allow them to use a specific eye and side of the brain to deal with the threat. To test it out, place an unfamiliar object in the centre of your fish tank and watch which way your pet swims round it.
  • Humpback whales prefer to use the right side of their jaws to scape up sand eels from the ocean floor.
  • There has been a long-running Internet Meme that all polar bears are left-handed but we cannot find any scientific evidence to support it. In fact, one study of injury patterns in polar bear forelimbs found injuries to the right forelimb to be more frequent than those to the left, suggesting, perhaps, right-handedness.

If you come across any other reports on animals that are left-sided or disagree with any of those above, please
Click here to comment on this article online

3. Lefty Book

Lefthanders Reg Fahie and Joe MacDonald have put their lifetime of experiences into an entertaining book called “Lefty” that uses a cartoon character to show the challenges and frustrations facing left-handers in a right-handed world. They have done it in a light-hearted way and while us lefties will recognise all of the situations described in the book they will no doubt, as always, be a revelation to right-handers.

We are not sure all the situations they illustrate are relevant in all countries (some are related to driving on the right for example) and some of them are a bit far-fetched and ignore our ability to adapt and make the best of things, but they do point out a lot of little niggles and annoyances that only apply to us a lefthanders.

Left hander moves cup to left side

Lefthander using egg whisk backwards

Lefthander using backwards video game machine

There are 74 pages of cartoons like these and each has an explanation for right-handers upside-down at the bottom. Reg has a supply of the hard-back books in Canada and has agreed to send them out direct to Left Handers Club members.
Click here to see a video of the hard back book and order your copy

Even better, we have produced an Ebook version with all the pages enlarged to A4 size (210 x 297mm / 8.25 x 11.75 inches) so you can print them out and put your favourites on the wall to amuse fellow lefthanders and educate the righties. This digital version is much cheaper at only £4.95, has no delivery charge and is available now for immediate download.
Click here to order your copy of the download book

You comment on this book and let us know which are your favourite cartoons by leaving a comment on the article here

4. Left handed expressions

The left side is often associated in language with awkwardness and clumsiness (because right-handers think left-handed people look awkward using the tools that they have specifically designed to make them backwards for us!). the Spanish expression “tener dos pies izquierdos“, In English, the expression “to have two left feet” refers to clumsiness in the domains of football or dancing.

A “left-handed compliment” is considered one that is unflattering or dismissive in meaning.

The Polish expression “mieć dwie lewe rÄ™ce“, Dutch “twee linkerhanden hebben“, German “zwei linke Hände haben“, the Bulgarian expression “dve levi ratse“, French “avoir deux mains gauches“, Hungarian kétbalkezes and Czech “Mít obÄ› ruce levé” all mean “to have two left hands” – that one is clumsy or is a very poor handyman.

The German idiom “mit dem linken Fuß aufgestanden sein“, the Spanish expression “levantarse con el pie izquierdo“, the French expression “s'être levé du pied gauche“and the Hungarian expression “bal lábbal kel fel” (literally, to have gotten up with the left foot) mean to have a bad day and do everything wrong or unsuccessfully, related to the English expression “to get up on the wrong side of the bed”.

The Welsh phrase “tu chwith allan” (left side out) refers to an object being inside-out. In Russian, the use of the term nalyevo means “on the left”, but can also connotate taking bribes or “sneaky” behavior. Balszerencse (lit. “left luck”) is Hungarian for “bad luck”.

If you have any more information on any of these sayings or know others from your country, please
click here to add a comment to this article



That's all for this month – we will be in touch again soon

Best wishes

Keith & Lauren

and all at the Left Handers Club

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6 comments on “LHC NL February 2011
  1. James says:

    Interesting…. a Left Hander’s watch. Do you realize that if you were to have one with Hebrew lettering/Numbers that that too would be perfect? I have a regular-old “right hand” running watch with the Hebrew markings – א ב ×’ ד ×”… -but (as usual) it runs in the clockwise rotation. Just thought I would mention this.
    It is always good to find another source for us Lefties!

  2. Pawan says:

    I m lefty, i face many problems. In my family all are right handed. i m fustrated .But when i saw this it makes me comfortable. I am happy that many people are like me lefthander.

  3. L J Bird says:

    Knitting is making a come-back; are left-handers going to be left out? Hachette are re-issuing their knitting part work which doesn’t have any information for left-handers, not even the old ‘look at the instructions in the mirror’ line – which doesn’t work anyway. what resources are available for the left-handed knitter? I can knit, having been taught by my mother, who taught herself to knit left-handedly in order to teach me (impressive) but when I knitted a raglan-sleeved jumper, the decreasing on each side was different – one side looked like cabling!

  4. laxmikant shinde says:

    since creativity doesnt depends on ur hand it precizely depends on how u put ur self in doing it

  5. Kelly says:

    I find your emails funny and informative. Keep up the good work.


  6. Eddie Eide says:

    I really want a “Zipped Executive Conference folder, padded leather, A4” with a ring-mechanisme added!
    That would increase the usefulness significantly.

    kind regards
    Eddie Eide

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