Being Left-Handed

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Are you left-handed?


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  • #71
KingNothing
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I think nowadays everyone wants to be ambidextrous, and they seem to claim they are just because they can draw a curvy line with both hands.
 
  • #72
Danger
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Hi again;
I don't know whether or not there's a specific definition of the term. In one article I read that one was considered ambidextrous if s/he used the off hand for anything of significance. Seems a little slack to me. In my case, I do just about everything with whichever hand is closest. I have noticed to some extent that I do things differently, but equally, such as how I hold a pen or a fork. As in ShawnD's case, there seems to be a little more fine motor control with the right, and more power with the left. One thing struck me as a little peculiar. I usually do technical sketches or notes with the right, but can't do art worth a damn. My left is for picture drawing and creative writing. I suspect that it might be due to which brain hemisphere is being stimulated most at the time. Opinions?
Also, I'd be very interested to know whether anyone else out there has experienced that vertigo thing I mentioned earlier.
 
  • #73
Danger
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PS:
I can type pretty quickly (in my much younger days I peaked at 120 wpm). Even now with the keyboard often sharing my lap with a cat, and arthritis, about 30 or 40 is normal and I can hit 80. The really annoying thing that I suspect might be due to the ambidextrousness is that there's a minor tendency to transpose letters from one side to the other. For instance, d's & k's, e's & i's, etc. I use the proper finger motion, but sometimes with the wrong hand.
 
  • #74
ShawnD
Science Advisor
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KingNothing said:
I think nowadays everyone wants to be ambidextrous, and they seem to claim they are just because they can draw a curvy line with both hands.
We should really get a dictionary definition here to keep everything straight.
Ambidexterity - The property of being equally skillful with each hand.

I think everybody is born ambidextrous, but you just phase it out. When I was 5 or so, I could play hockey both ways, I could write with either hand, I could bat both ways, and I could throw with either hand. Now that I'm 19, each of those abilities is done 1 way only. You just sort of pick one way to do things and do it that way to get better at it.

It's neat when you can't pick which hand should be dominant for certain things. When I was learning to type on a computer (around 8 or so), I couldn't decide which thumb should hit the spacebar, so I decided to use both thumbs. To this day I still hit the space bar with both thumbs at the same time; everybody thinks I'm nuts. :tongue:
 
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  • #75
Danger
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There might be something to that theory. I know that cats and dogs don't have a favoured paw, but always attributed it to simplified brain structure. Maybe all animals are that way naturally. As for the definition, I know what the dictionary says, but science seems to be misrepresented there sometimes. I strongly suspect that you won't be able to find anyone anywhere who does things exactly the same with either side. Even accidentally practising more with one would bias the skill level. If that's correct, then most ambidextrous people would appear right-handed because they would use implements made for righties that way (scissors, for example).
 
  • #76
ShawnD
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Danger said:
I know what the dictionary says, but science seems to be misrepresented there sometimes.
I guess you are right. The dictionary version of "narcotic" is laughable.

Could you say ambidexterity is when you can do generic stuff with either hand, and it averages out to both hands being about equal overall?
It sounds really stupid, but I've met people with one hand so dominant that they can't do simple tasks like pouring juice unless they use their dominant hand.
 
  • #77
Danger
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Hi ShawnD;
Sorry for the delay in responding; I was off snooping about other places. I really don't know what proper etiquette is for this sort of thing. As mentioned, I've only been on the net for a couple of weeks and have never interacted with people before. Your definition certainly seems to reflect the way it is with me. And I've know people like those you mentioned. To me, it seems as much a handicap as not having the limb at all. A correlation does seem to exist with different brain function. Just as more artistic people are lefties, and strictly physical types righties, those with less demarcation of hemisphere dominance tend to exhibit lateral thinking (analytical tracking, whatever). We just don't think the same way. Whether that's good or bad is debatable, but I enjoy it and find it useful. Bye the bye, a casual observation of my customers at Instant Cash (like a Money Mart) shows that about 40% are lefties. Maybe money management is something difficult for them.
 
  • #78
KingNothing
880
4
ShawnD said:
To this day I still hit the space bar with both thumbs at the same time; everybody thinks I'm nuts. :tongue:

But can you really attribute this to the spacebar-thumb habit?

Danger said:
There might be something to that theory. I know that cats and dogs don't have a favoured paw, but always attributed it to simplified brain structure. Maybe all animals are that way naturally. As for the definition, I know what the dictionary says, but science seems to be misrepresented there sometimes. I strongly suspect that you won't be able to find anyone anywhere who does things exactly the same with either side. Even accidentally practising more with one would bias the skill level. If that's correct, then most ambidextrous people would appear right-handed because they would use implements made for righties that way (scissors, for example).

Well, I would think what matters is the actual skill level, not whether or not you practiced to get there. It would be very hard to define any bodily function as 'the way you are naturally' as even as babies our mums probably tended to play with one hand a little more.

Also, many things change within about a year after birth. For instance, all newborns have blue eyes. All babies strong enough to do so can swim. Kinda weird.
 
  • #79
Danger
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Hi King;
I'm too lazy to type the whole thing, if that's okay. That's the first I ever heard about blue-eyed babies. I believe you, but it's hard to envision a blue-eyed Nigerian or Ethiopian except as a random mutation. Is it just because pigmentation isn't complete at birth? The swimming bit doesn't surprise me, because of our ancestors being aquatic. It should be a racial memory sort of deal. Don't embryos at some point have gills? I certainly don't dispute that most critical brain wiring occurs explosively over the first year or so, and that environmental factors affect it heavily. What I meant was that an ambidextrous person would be observed to do things right-handed more often than left if it were more convenient. Personally don't go out of my way to use scissors left-handed, or manipulate the controls on my right-hand designed .45. If either were designed for lefties, that's how I would use them, and equally well. Since the vast majority of things are made for righties, people might therefore assume that I'm right-handed.
 
  • #80
Danger
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Me again;
As I mentioned repeatedly, this is all new to me. The GMT thing is hard to get used to, especially in not knowing when someone else is. Day, night, what? Anyhow, I thought maybe I should mention that I have to go now, in case someone expects a reply. It's 1:40 am here. Will catch up tomorrow.
 

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