by Wes Wilson
On the way to and from work I drive by the downtown walking track. As a matter of fact, when Iím gone, dead and gone, theyíll name that little section of South Bayou ďWilsonís Way,Ē because I use it more than anybody. I sometimes become obsessive, possessive about the things and people I love. Iím a little crazy that way. That little section of road is mine, people!
Anyway, Iíve noticed that people, naturally, walk in a counterclockwise direction around the walking track, as if natural instincts compel them to stay to the right and make left-handed turns on the ends. You could say it comes from driving on the right side of the road, but the British donít walk clockwise around circular tracks. Think of auto racing, think NASCAR. Everyone knows stock cars go counterclockwise, except for that Allen Kulwiki victory lap thing, but thatís another story, somebody elseís story. This all got me to thinking.
Maybe itís a right-handed thing. Most of the world is right-handedó90-93%. Have you ever asked a left-handed person if their first instinct in walking a circular track is to go to the left, turn to the right, and walk in a clockwise fashion?
Now before you think Iím going to disparage all left-handers, youíre wrong. Some of the most important people in my life were or are left-handed: my Grandmother Wilson, my father, my wife, and my son. Left-handers are good people, and as my daddy used to say, ďWe are in our right mind.Ē Being a left-handed, right-brained person means you will tend to think more creatively, while we right-handed, left-brained have to work a little harder at artistic expression. The left side of the brain is the pragmatic side, the ducks-in-a-row side. And, boy, do I ever like to have my ducks in a row.
Tell that to your child when he or she comes home complaining that school is too hard.
My father used to complain about all the tools made for right-handed people, and so on and so forth. The complaints never ended. He did own left-handed guns, which upon his passing I claimed for my son.
Have you ever thought about why most nuts and bolts are made with right-handed threads? You know, clockwise on, counterclockwise off? My theory is that properly tightening a nut is the most important process, and this puts the wrench on the right-hand side of the bolt so a right-hander can use his most powerful arm to pull in a downward arc, thereby using maximum torque with minimal effort.
I can see the mechanics now, scratching their heads, saying, ďWell, Iíll use my right-handed people to tighten nuts and my left-handed people to loosen them.Ē
A few years ago my wife bought a plug-in, smell-good thing from Bath & Body Works. It never fails that when I replace the cartridge I twist and turn with all my might before realizing the thing has left-handed threads. Why it has left-handed threads I donít know. When I finally give up and realize the hopelessness of the situation, Iíve already used every ounce of testosterone in my body to tighten, not loosen, that little globe-full of smell-good. So then I have to use a rag or something and force my brain to tell my hand to twist to the right, clockwise. Then, inevitably, when the globe will not budge, I have to assure myself: ďThis thing does have left-handed threads, doesnít it?Ē
Itís as if Iím trying to talk myself into believing what I already know as fact. Then I find some inner strength or big pliers or a hammer or something. Itís the devil.
Just so you will know, Ronald Reagan and George H. W. Bush were left-handed, so were Jimmie Carter, Bill Clinton, and now Barak Obama. Is there a pattern here?
Yes, most definitely.
They would all prefer to walk around a circular track in a clockwise fashion, and they like to take nuts off, not tighten them. Oh, you donít believe me? I think Iíll lobby Congress for a few billion of stimulus money to study this phenomenon.
Read more about author Wes Wilson at his web site: WesWords.com
And contact him at wesnall@tcworks
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Hereís another Wes Wilson story at USADEEPSOUTH:
Skiing On the Catfish Pond
Wes Wilson has published his second novel Nor Gloom of Night. This book, like the first, is a mystery set in the Mississippi Delta, available through bookstores, Amazon.com and Barnes & Noble.com. For an excerpt, visit Wes' website WES WORDS.
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