February 24 Left-Handed Chop Sticks


“I am never offended by dumb blonde jokes because I know I am not dumb. I also know I am not blonde.” Dolly Parton

I am ambidextrous (able to use the right hand and left hand equally well). I have been working on it since I was in high school. I used to write my notes in History class with my left hand out of sheer boredom and sometimes to make it really interesting, I would write them with my left hand and also backwards so that they would have to be viewed in a mirror to be read. Weird, I know, but I had to entertain myself somehow, it was History class.

I was a construction worker in Northeast Ohio for five years and I would often hammer, drill, strip wire, saw and screw with my left hand. After eight hours of doing these tasks day in and day out, my dominant hand got pretty tired, so I used my non-dominant hand on a regular basis to counteract this fatigue.

Sometimes I find myself still doing things left-handed like brushing my teeth and scrambling eggs. But chop sticks are an entirely different beast. Most times I can barely eat with chopsticks with my right hand (my dominant hand) even though as a youngster I traveled extensively throughout many countries that exclusively eat with chopsticks: Hong Kong, Taiwan, Macao, Korea, Japan. To be fair, that was many, many moons ago in another lifetime. My Host Mother in Japan would have contests between myself and her daughter with chopsticks: picking up tiny beans from one bowl and placing them in another bowl in a timed competition! Of course there was a timed competition, this was Japan in the 80’s, everything was a timed competition.

I’ve never even attempted to eat with chopsticks with my left hand until today. I chose a small meal (wink) more like a snack in between meals ( well, for me anyway – for a “normal” person this may have counted as a meal). Since I was doing this just to see if I could do it, I did not count it toward my regular meal consumption. I ate a small Caesar salad  with chicken and rice. Everyone knows how hard it is to pick up rice with chopsticks! I’m sure I looked like a total dumb-ass to the wait staff and the people in the restaurant. To make it even more interesting, I brought my own chop sticks – this wasn’t even an Asian restaurant. Maybe I should have put my right arm in a sling so I had a justifiable reason to spill my entire meal all over my lap and the floor! I literally laughed out loud the entire time and I think I caught one lady from another table laughing at me too. It was funny. I wish I had taken someone with me to get video…next time.


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