Wednesday, October 08, 2008

I'm Left Handed and So Is Our Next President...

Last night I watched the presidential debate between Barak Obama and John McCain on TV (I'd listened to the first one on the radio) and noticed that, like me, they are both left handed.

Naturally, I did some googling and found that there have been lots of lefties in the White House. Says the Washington Post:

No matter who wins in November, 6 of the 12 chief executives since the end of World War II will have been left-handed: Harry Truman, Gerald Ford, Ronald Reagan, the elder Bush, Clinton and either Obama or McCain. That's a disproportionate number, considering that only one in 10 people in the general population is left-handed.

This phenomenon of lefty Commanders-in-Chief has been covered in a number of other places including The New York Sun (which had a great photo of southpaw Obama autographing books), ACB News (which has a headline like a sugarless gum ad), and Economist.com (which includes a nifty lefty visual).

Come forward all you creative people--who's else out there is left-handed? (Maybe we should start a Facebook group.)

32 comments:

Liza Knight said...

*raises left hand*

What a small world we live in.

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Mandy said...

I am not left handed, but I like your site:) I watched the debate too, very interesting but I like it better when they stand behind podiums, I don't know why:)
-Mandy
www.yabr.blogspot.com

rightonmom said...

A fellow leftie! We're the only ones in our right minds, right? Oprah's a left too. Both my hubby and I are, but not one of our 4 kids. Go figure.
Nice work.

Lucia
http://divinelywritten.blogspot.com

vamsi parimi said...

Enough of handed talk but I felt so weird when people mostly leftys flex their wrist and position their hand on top of the paper or book they write. Is it a common kinder-garden practice or is it a self taught convenience?

Congratulations on being in October's BLOG-NOTE.

Watch me dream at my blog

www.timmiri.com

Parimi

Jen Robinson said...

I'm left-handed, too.

Space_Gopher said...

I'm impressed by their ability to talk for 90 minutes and say nothing of any value.

WiZ said...

i hope obama has all his stuff packed for the white house

Kim Baker said...

I'm left-handed. My husband is left-handed. Our kids: right-handed.

ada said...

So many people in my family are lefties. My mother,my brother, my uncles, aunts and cousins.My son would have probably written with his left hand had his teachers not insisted he write with his right hand (this is 1996!) and though I write with my right, I have strong urges to write and do many things lefty. Go figure that out! Very interesting entry.
Ada

ACofAP said...

Very interesting indeed. I am left handed and consider myself somewhat artistic and a nature lover. I work at Wild Birds Unlimited and I have noticed that alot of our customers are left handed. I thought there must be some relationship between someone who enjoys nature (feeding the birds in our case) and being left handed. Thanks for bringing this up, I hadn't noticed both candidates were lefties!

Christina Forshay said...

I'm a lefty, so is my mom, dad and sister. My little one's a righty though. Oh well!

KateGladstone said...

Vamsi Parimi asked about left-handers who hook the left wrist to write.

According to University of Chicago neuropsychology/handedness researcher Dr. Jerre Levy, the hooked writing wrist -- which appears in roughly 50% of left-handers and roughly 1% - 2% of right-handers -- results from having the brain's language-centers on the same side as the writing arm (instead of on the opposite side of the writing arm, where most people have them). The location of a brain's language centers apparently results from inborn genetic factors.

However, as a handwriting specialist I've observed that some left-handers (who wouldn't otherwise have bent the writing wrist) start to do this as a result of poorly designed/poorly supervised handwriting instruction: when teachers require left-handers to position their writing-paper in the way that works for most right-handers, the left-handers quickly discover that they cannot write with such a paper-position unless they also change their hand-position by hooking the wrist. (Even though the teacher may punish this, still the same teacher who punishes this position may require a paper-position that makes the hooked wrist obligatory. The teachers do not often recognize it as abuse, but I consider it just as abusive as any of the notorious efforts to turn left-handers into "imitation right-handers.")

Left-handers (and right-handers with a lefty child to teach or parent) may find some useful hints on the lefties' page of my handwriting web-site -- http:/www.HandwritingRepair.info/LeftyLinks.html ... the material there includes a link to a lefties-only handwriting textbook/CD-ROM series.

hollycupala said...

All three of us rgz divas who came to the kidlit conference are lefties! Dia Calhoun, Lorie Ann Grover, and me. And Jone, our conference organizer! So none of us had to fight for the left corner at the restaurant tables...and Jen! And Kim! Left-on, bloggers!

Marty said...

I do some task left handed and some task right... It gets so confusing I even confuse myself sometimes.

Steve L. said...

Hey, congrat on being featured on blogs of note! keep up the good work.

Gina Perry said...

Another lefty (artist) in the group!

Due Diligence Associates said...

I'm not left handed, but I do have red hair which has similar 1/10 statistics. Unfortunately, it appears only 2 former Presidents had red hair (Jefferson and Van Buren). Several others had reddish tinting. I'm not seeing a correlation. Sad day.

db

Kelli @ writing the waves said...

Very observant...I would have never noticed that.

*I found your blog through Writer Mama and recently added you to my blogroll (I have the latest CWIM too)so you might be seeing more of me around here. :)

Kelly said...

How did I not know this? Interesting! I am right handed,so thankfully presidency is not one of my aspirations!

Miz Mika said...

Yay For All The Lefties :D
Maybe we should start a facebook group LOL.
We are in good company. Very Good Company.
Nice Work

~Miz Mika

P.S. I'm left handed and so is my son...

Alice said...

Wow--lefties are coming out of the woodwork. This is fun!

kategladstone: Thanks for that interesting info on that odd hand position. I don't write that way myself. The worst example I've ever seen in my freshman year Algebra teacher. It was quite a sight to watch her write on the board. (The was the only thing I found the least bit interesting about Algebra.)

James said...

My Grandpa was born a lefty and he was forced to write with his right hand because of the German influence. The only lefties in my family are him, my aunt and me.

They left handed people can do great things and we are starting to see more of it. Keep up the good work!

Longbowhunting said...

If you keep up this left handed thing some physic is going to claim that it is a sign of the end of the world. Is there anything that would point to something about a left handed persons personality appealing to the average US citizens ? Does a left handed person think and act differently than a right handed person ? Is that difference detectable in the conscious state or the sub conscious state ?

Crazy thought pattern I guess

longbowhunting.com

Anna M. Lewis said...

I am a mixture of right and left handedness. My husband is left handed BUT totally left brained.

All three kids are right handed.

This is so so so interesting to me!

aimee.jean said...

Hello,

I'm left-handed and used to write using the hooked writing wrist but taught myself to write in the more standard fashion when I was learning shorthand in HS. I have difficulty though with right and left turns while driving and also hot and cold water spigots. One of the first things I notice about people is whether they're left- or right-handed. And how interesting that two lefties don't always produce a left-handed child!

Neo said...

1135
I am left handed leaning ambi, lefties are by trade innovators, call us the ones that "do it the other way"
I am a true lefty which did save my life I was in a car crash with a left side head injury
I still play guitar right handed (leading me to believe I am ambi)

Doret said...

Lefties rock, but Lefty scissors suck

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Alice said...

Oh I'm with you on those lefty scissors! I hated those things in grade school. Plus I was the only left-handed first grader in my class and I felt like a tiny little freak.

And I always seen to notice someone's handedness as soon after meeting them meet them. I wonder if being left-handed makes one more aware whether others are like them or not.

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