Yes, and today Nabisco has produced a “limited run of Left-handed Oreo cookie packages,” just to show their love for left-handers and, incidentally, to make some money.
We have a lot of left-handers in our family: my wife Joice; our son Kirk and his wife Christine, two of their three children; two of the three children from our daughter Karol and her husband Mike. Mike and I also partially qualify because we do some things naturally with our left hand.
To celebrate this auspicious international occasion, my wife and I decided to take our nearby grandchildren out for ice cream. Only one of them, Cam, and I are right-handed so, to be fair, we would have to eat our ice cream with our left hand.
There were some rules, perhaps international: we would use spoons, not forks or our fingers, and we would not eat outside where it is nearing 100o Fahrenheit today. For hygienic sake, we would wash our hands before (and after) we ate and the boys would use napkins instead of their arms to wipe the sticky ice cream from their faces. Otherwise, no holds barred, the kids could order what they wanted—size, color, consistency—just so they honored Left-Handers Day.
At the ice cream store there were 125 varieties in 80 tubs, so some were mixed, but with all the possible combinations and selections, it took us 25 minutes to place our order. In the meantime, little kids and their older siblings or mommies swarmed about in the store, slurping and slopping as they did so. Obviously all were not honoring International Left Handers Day, which was not surprising because only about 15% of the world’s people are left-handed.
Prior to our departure for ice cream, Joice had done some research on left-handers. She wanted to be sure our grandchildren were really a part of the world’s 15% before they could eat their ice cream.
She learned that many famous and successful people have been left-handed, which is not totally surprising because many famous and successful people have also been right-handed. But today that doesn’t matter: think of lefties Benjamin Franklin, Isaac Newton, Albert Einstein, Marie Curie, Aristotle, Michelangelo, Napoleon and Mahatma Gandhi—to say nothing of Bill Clinton, George H. W. Bush and Barack Obama. And time does not permit us to say more of Oprah Winfrey, Mark Zuckerberg, Bill Gates or Ruth Bader Ginsburg, although they would certainly like us to say more.
Left-handers have special needs and could easily constitute a pressure group to petition the government to declare them a minority. Schools buy desks that are made for right-handers and scissors are a special problem for lefties. Often at the emergency room of a hospital you will see them requiring minor surgery for scissors entwined on their fingers and thumbs. American entrepreneurs, much more conscious of cultural needs than educators, have knives with serrated blades on the right of the blade, left-handed peelers and toothbrushes, left-handed rulers and other assorted and commonly used devices.
Some left-handers have trouble blowing their nose because the tissues come out of the box with the leading edge toward the right nostril, surely an act of discrimination and prejudice. Finger nail clippers are a special problem because a left-hander has to invert the instrument and you will often see them with bandaged fingers or toes. And grooming one’s hair left handed can be an act of torture if the brush is designed for the rightie.
I attend a men’s Bible study and I notice that the left-handers hardly ever can find a book of the Bible, let alone a chapter or verse very quickly. If the leaders says, “Turn now to Genesis,” the left-hander will turn to Revelation. Or if he says, “Look towards the top of the page,” the poor leftie will look at the bottom of the page. The Biblical world becomes backward: the saint is the sinner and the sinner is the saint. No wonder there are so few left-handed pastors—they need left-handed Bibles and Zondervan, Baker, Nelson and the rest of the Bible factories are not conscious of the needs. And yet they have “Study Bibles” for singles, men, women, old people, Baptists and Methodists—why neglect the physical cum spiritual needs of lefties?
I think the writer of Ecclesiastes was left-handed. He was always chasing after the wind, which is what I would expect a left-hander to do. In Chapter 3 in his recitation, he made sure there was a time for everything it seems, but why did he not say “There is a time for left-handers and there is a time for right-handers”?
Remember the left-handed troops mentioned in Judges chapter 20? There were 700 of them and each of them could “sling a stone at a hair and not miss.” And some of the warriors who joined David could shoot arrows or sling stones right-handed or left-handed—ambidextrous soldiers. What more could David have wanted?
It just again proves my point: left-handers must be recognized as a true minority in any culture. In America they should have the right to food-stamps, free vaccinations, old shoes and clothes, freedom marches, automatic weapons and other amenities.
Let’s hear it for “International Left-handers Day!”
P.S. My wife has joined the “Left-handers Club” and will be receiving a left-handers calendar and an email newsletter to keep her abreast of books, videos, apps, blogs and “lefty links.” She will be able to hold her head high as she walks amongst the right-handers of the world and, if you want to shake hands with her, make sure it is your left-hand.