(besides the fact that it isn’t really a word.)
Let us suppose for a moment, that, like Horatio Nelson, you lose the use of your dominant hand.
You don’t have to be as dramatic about the actual losing of use – though feel free to make up any kind of back-story you like; blood and gore totally optional – the point at hand (hur hur, sorry) is how one copes with said loss of function. And this is where I am at a loss. Because while I have a reasonably active imagination (Exhibit A), what I do not have is a dominant hand.
OK, yes, if you break it down by activity, I do. Writing: left hand dominant. Swatting flies: right hand dominant. Ten pin bowling: left hand dominant. Cricket bowling: right hand dominant (although frankly pretty rubbish either way). Archery: left hand dominant. Brushing teeth: right hand dominant.
But then there are all the things I do with whichever hand seems handiest at the time: pouring tea, drinking tea, sewing, holding book… All of which makes it rather hard to intuit the difficulties inherent in losing one’s dominant hand.
So tell me: how would it affect your everyday life if you couldn’t use your dominant hand? Assuming that it’s still there on the end of your (functioning) arm, but not operating in the manner habitual to hands.
Which activities would be harder?
Which would be flat-out impossible?
Which things (if any) would be unaffected?
If you have found yourself in this situation, either temporarily or permanently, I would love to hear from you. And if you have a dominant hand of which you have never lost the use, I’d love to hear from your imagination.
For extra credit: what if neither hand was functional? (I am making the bold assumption that, like the majority of people, your number of hands does not exceed two – except when second-guessing yourself.)
Disclaimer: once I am enlightened on this matter, it is very likely to appear in a book. No direct quotes, no stolen stories – but on the other hand, no royalties either.