Friday, February 02, 2007

That Mouse is a Southpaw and other Epiphanies

I finally broke down and bought a real optical mouse for my laptop. I had been using the touchpad mouse, but one of the buttons only works by pounding on it. After driving the guy at the computer store bonkers by having to test every available mouse (Hey, inquiring minds want to know), I finally bought the one I liked. Of course, having some Scotch-Irish ancestry, it was also the cheapest mouse. But it matched the color of my laptop and had a scroll button, so I was happy.

I got home and plugged it in. Because I'm left handed (which many people say explains my off-the-wall sense of humor. See: Comics, Archer), I had all my text books on the right side of my laptop. The only open area on the desk was on the left hand side of the laptop, and I was too lazy to actually move my stack of books (and other assorted junk). So, I put the mouse on the left hand side.

This was actually some sort of Southpaw epiphany for me because I had never actually ever thought to put a computer mouse on the left side. Mice are on the right side because it has always done that way. Left handed people are much more ambidextrous than right handed people simply because the world (at least in America) is designed for right handed people. You have to accommodate that or you can't function.

From an early age, even when there are left handed products, you feel like a dork in Kindergarten if you have to actually use the scissors with the big word "LEFTY" engraved on it. It is like some perverted Sesame Street Scarlet Letter. This product brought to you by the letter "L."

Yeah right, L as in Lefty-Loser.

The same principle applies to computers. People who like computers and like playing around with computers already border on being Geeks from the outset. You really don't want to be the Lefty Geek, that's like being the Ueber-Geek. Which is fine if you want to be like those weird Three Gunmen characters on the X-Files, wear pocket protectors, can outquote anyone on Star Wars dialogue, and never date again. Not that I am into any of those things, but having a left handed mouse was just literally unthinkable to me. I had never heard tell of such a notion. (No, I do not live in a cave).

Thus, by accident of desk spacing, I have come to the realization that I am a Southpaw, I am a Mouse User, so why not be a Southpaw Mouse User?
It's my party and I'll double click if I want to.

I'm being oppressed by The (right-handed) Man.
Vive la Revolution!


Northland Al said...

The keyboard shelf on the desks at my "day job" have a reversible mouse shelf to allow the mouse to be placed on either side. Also, in most cases, you can change the settings the mouse to switch the right-left buttons so the "right-click" button will still use the index finger if the mouse is on the left side.

This does make you wonder how many left-handed people have not employed these features.

For Macs - not a problem... one button only.

Kyle said...

I'm taking off my "biggest nerd" hat now...