Saturday, July 27, 2013

curse of the south paw

I'm left handed. I remember when I was a kid trying to write in a three ring binder.  It wasn't easy.  I remember mom coming home one day with a notebook with a clasp at the top.  I went to school the next day and the teacher told me to take it home and not bring it back.  She said that I had to learn how to write using a three ring binder.  I could not take a page out of the notebook.  I had to write in the binder.  It didn't make any sense to me.  Ruled paper is ruled paper, only two holes were at the top of the page instead of three holes on the side.  It seemed important to the teacher that no accommodation should be made for my  left handedness.  I took the new notebook home that my mother gave me and did the best I could with the ring binder.

Throughout my time at R.A. Mitchell Elementary, I had to use the ring binder.  I don't know why they made me do that.  Was I being punished for not being right handed?  Was making me use the three ring binder supposed to force me to start writing with my right hand?  What did happen was that I learned to write sideways.  I would turn the binder ring side up, and did my assignments writing sideways, top down.

I remember kids throughout junior high and high school commenting on my odd skill.  It was a skill I had to learn because of being left handed in a right hand world.  Years ago my wife bought me a sketch book with the spiral wire on the side.  I used it by flipping it to it's side and drawing sideways.  I still get comments from time to time.

I don't have to deal with spiral binders and ring binders much.  I don't have an authority over me telling me what I can and can't use to write.  It's nice being an adult.
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