My friend Loretta likes to make fun of me for being left-handed. Apparently the Bible is adamant about lefties’ fundamental malevolence, and we’re supposed to die years before our right-handed peers. We’re supposed to be clumsy, evil, and mildly retarded.
I tell her that her beliefs are embarrassingly archaic. Left-handed is the thing to be nowadays. We’re dominated by the right hemisphere of the brain, making us more creative than right-handers. There are statistically more left-handed geniuses in the world than right-handed ones, and college graduates earn 15% more money when they’re left-handed. Lefties have better problem-solving skills. We have larger vocabularies. Notable left-handers include Jimi Hendrix, John Dillinger, MC Escher, Lewis Carroll, Michelangelo, Paul McCartney, and Leonardo da Vinci. We’re better in fistfights. We see better underwater.
Loretta has been watching my latest spiel with an infuriating smugness, but I know she’s impressed. She stands, and for a fleeting moment I imagine her falling to my feet, crying desperately, “Teach me to be left-handed! Oh, please!” Instead, she makes her way to her desk.
“That is impressive,” she says. “The evidence connecting left-handedness and intelligence is staggering.”
I nod enthusiastically. “We’re pretty much brilliant.”
“I’m beginning to change my mind,” Loretta says, “but there’s only one way to truly settle this debate.” She approaches me, carrying a piece of paper and a pair of scissors. “I challenge you to a paper-cutting contest.”
My smile falters. “That’s not fair.”
“Okay. We can have a potato-peeling contest or a putting-on-belts contest instead.”
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