We smudge every chalkboard we write on. We have odd aches in our wrists, arms and necks from using desks designed against our handedness. We feel a sense of shared suffering and yet camaraderie when we meet other “lefties,” because they understand.
Thankfully, our generation has never felt the institutionalized discrimination against the left-handed. The mistreatment of left-handedness as a mental disorder that needed to be fixed is gone. But there’s no denying that, because we are the minority, the world is set up against us.
But out of all the places to be a lefty, UC Berkeley is an awesome place to be. Here’s why:
There are lefty desks in our classrooms. However, they are few and located in only some buildings. Also, sometimes a right-handed person sits in one of our desks (yes, they are ours, because we do actually need them to live a “normal” student’s life) and throws off your groove in class. But these desks do exist in places like Wheeler, Barrows and Dwinelle halls! Unfortunately, we have yet to see a real solution to being a lefty when we’re sitting in one of those tiny little auditorium desks.
“Lefty’s,” otherwise known as “The Left Hand Store,” is located at Fisherman’s Wharf. You can get all sorts of odds and ends that are designed with lefties in mind. Do right-handed people have their own store? Of course not! (But we think that’s all right, because they do dominate every regular store in existence.)
People generally think lefties are awesome. Right-handers really like to acknowledge left-handers because we’re different and not very common. We’re like the unicorns of dexterity. Unicorns are cool.
And then there are the politics. It’s a common conception that everyone in Berkeley must lean toward the left of the political spectrum … right? So you’re already in a city where there’s plenty of acceptance to tend toward the left, especially considering we’re on the “Left Coast.”
So this Left-Handers’ Day (which was yesterday), whether you’re left, right or a little of both (left-handers think the ambidextrous are the coolest unicorns of all), hopefully, you just took a little time to consider how something as natural as reaching out your hand can be celebrated internationally.
Image source: Brendan Riley, under Creative Commons
Contact Jessica Rogness at [email protected] and follow her on Twitter @jessarogness.