From the beginning of this challenge, I knew difficult situations would arise but didn't realize how easily adaptable other tasks would become.
Thirty days are now over and I think I have a little bit more of an understanding when left-handed people bitch, squabble, and cause an attention-grabbing tantrum because their butter knife is only for the right-handed population. But don't worry, I still don't have any empathy for them.
Here's what I found...
The Top 3 Easiest Tasks
1. Computer Mouse (Learning Curve: 2 days)
Directing a computer mouse around an LCD screen is a menial task taken so much for granted it's practically oxygen. But with my left hand I directed that arrow around the screen in much the same way that a steaming pile of crap on your lawn is "directed" by your dog's asshole. The learning curve, however, only 2 days.
2. Brushing Teeth (Learning Curve: 4-6 brushes)
Bad breath is a great lose new friends or ward off enemies; nobody wants to talk or sit next to the guy whose breath is outlawed by the terms of the Treaty of Versailles. Traditional protocol — as dictated by dentists with happy, anthropomorphic teeth cartoons — is that we should brush twice a day. This took about 4-6 brushes before correct maneuverability was achieved.
3. Tying a Shoelace (Learning Curve: 5 days)
I live in Florida where the comfort and freedom of sandals trumps the style and practicality of any other type of footwear ever made. Ever. But to fully embrace the challenge I had to learn to lead the shoe tying with the left hand. Although this took less than 5 days to do, complete mastery took about 5 days without seeing me throw my shoes across the room in rage.
The Top 3 Hardest Tasks
1. Playing Guitar (Learning Curve: Impossible)
Most of you think the guitar is a musical instrument. INCORRECT. The guitar is a sex machine — period. I was going to restring the guitar left-handed but the nut and bridge aren't currently set up to handle that (the plastic thing at the top and metal thing at the bottom for all you technical people out there). So I ended up trying to play not only backwards, but upside down. That's to make other guitarists shake their heads, put down their instruments and quietly mutter "Fuck this guy" while they consider another killing me.
2. Writing (Learning Curve: Too Long)
I can tell you my penmanship skills — a prerequisite to kindergarten graduation right under knowing shapes and not eating paste — didn't improve over thirty days. All of my handwriting with the left hand looks like a Parkinson's sufferer having a seizure.
3. Chopsticks (Learning Curve: Not a Change in Hell)
My eating habits are abysmal and have been described by my ex-girlfriends as "exactly the reason we broke up." Imagine using the opposite hand with an eating utensil that should have never made it through the Ming Dynasty.