” ये गांड हाथ से लिखता है , इसे सरस्वती क्या मिलेगी ( He writes with rectal hand, how will he get blessing of goddess Saraswati”) I was crying, but they were all laughing out loud. The leader of bullying gang was my 40 yr old uncle, and there were 4 right handed cousins ( 8 to 15) all laughing at my tears.. This was around 40 yrs ago..
I was excited to carry my first guitar to school and had just taken my natural left hand grip.. ” What the hell is this ? This is not how guitar is held “. My guitar teacher had pronounced my natural grip as wrong and cured me of it.
I have always struggled with large scissors, which are never made for left handers like me .. and same with vegetable peelers which are designed for right handed people only.
These incidents to correct our natural orientation remind me of the opening scene in the movie Immitation game where Alan Turing, the father of modern computing, takes suicide pills in protest against attempts of Govt to cure him of his homosexuality.. He dies of it. Turing was also a left hander.
We as left handers face a lot of other challenges as well
- Its hard to find left hand mouse. While you can change button but the ergonomics is always for the right handed people.
- Left hand golf clubs. I was cured of my golf stance on the first on greens
- Cutlery, cell phone default interfaces.
While we adapt, our brains are more flexible.. and probably thats why we succeed, why is the world so inconsiderate to us ?
We forgive right wing bigots who try to cure us humans. We smile at their thoughts that we need a cure for our natural orientations..
However, today is World left handers day. It celebrates our small population. We comprise approx 10 % of world population. In India , we are <5 % and face not only disadvantage but also stigma. We, the left handers adapt and work our way up. We do not ask for privileges, assembly seats or reservations.
Some of the left handers have done very well in life. 4 out 5 designers of Apple Mac were left handed. 5 out 7 last Presidents in USA including Obama have been left handed. Here I am listing ten of my favorite left handers and not so favorite ones in foot notes.
10 Laxmi Niwas Mittal : The emperor of steel world. I share with him Sadulpur town ( My maternal hometown) , my city of education ( Calcutta), my College ( St Xaviers College) .. He has been an awesome entrepreneur and I have been a failed one
9.Morgan Freeman : From Shawshank redemption to Million Dollar baby to Dark knight, his voice and poise make people fall in love movies
8.Jimmy Hendrix : Eric Clapton may be the god of guitar but no one strummed strings like him. One has to listen to some of his performances to see how a guitar can generate storm and frenzy both at the same time.
7. Ratan Tata : Ratan joined as a shop floor manager when Tata group had 17+ satraps. Each one thought himself to be the king. He dealt with each one of them from Russi Modi to Cyrus Mistry with laser focus and controlled aggression. I admire his ethics and charm
6. Bill Gates : He has impacted world like no one else. I despised him from being an evil entrepreneur but his second inning has been phenomenal in philanthropy. His acquisitions like Skype, LinkedIn, Yammer, Lync ensures he touches the digital life of almost every human today.
5. Jim Carrey : Possibly one of the best comedian and humorists of our age. Jim has almost redefined high energy comedy.
4. Sunny Leone : What a brave choice she made in career and chose to be a porn star. Today she resides in almost every male’s digital device and fantasies. Its interesting to see how she gave up porn when her objectives were met.
3. Albert Einstein : If there is one person who has become an icon of thinking, its him. Einstein famously said ” Knowledge takes you somewhere, Imagination takes you everywhere” His relativity and energy mass conversion theories today drives nuclear reactors, space travel and helps us understand our Universe better
2.Julius Caesar : The man who epitomizes courage and leadership and is immortal
1. Wasim Akram : I remember the site of bloodied face of K Shrikanth( Who was one of the most dreaded Indian opener) , I have witnessed Sunil Gavaskar who swore never to wear helmet, pick up a skull cap. I had seen his electric bowling in world cup 1997 where he broke stumps.. Justifiably the most dreaded left arm bowler ever.. His batting too was often awe inspiring.
Also its magical to see him in action :
I would also put Rafale Nadale at the same position and he sums up our predicament very well .
Beyond the list…
Now my favorite left hander and one of the most profound thinker.
There are left handers who are successful and I do not like them: Karan Johar, Amitabh Bachchan, Narendra Modi etc because of their poor ethics and value systems.
Now, interesting to look back and observe this:
The uncle who humiliated me for my left handedness, today has an undignified old age. Some of those bully boys couldnt event matriculate. One failed in high school and the other couldnt graduate after 4 attempts.
Even today they do not know that I use my right hand for wiping my ass 😀
My education is chronicled in LinkedIN
PS: I now discover
(1) Alan Turing was left handed
(2) Isaac Newton too
(3) Aristotle was lefty
( 4) Hold your breath Nicola Tesla too ..