My knife story

Your story made me think of one of my own ...

When I was a kid, I was what they call ambidextrous -- I could use either hand (or foot) equally. My grandfather had given me a small pen knife and had taught me how to keep it sharp. I went one step further: I made the knife so sharp that it could easily cut paper. Cool. 

One day I was, like you, whittling. I was switching hands, with one hand doing the whittling and the other pulling off the curls off a piece of wood I was fashioning into something or other (I can't remember). As I was reaching for the curl with my right hand, the knife slipped and embedded itself into the middle finger of my right hand. It was a fearful sight. I knew to squeeze hard and after a while the bleeing stopped. I snuck into the house and found some tape and gauze and it was not until suppertime that my accident came known. My father, a doctor, put on a decent bandage and while he had a few words for me, he thought it unnecessary to say too much and he let me keep the knife, figuring I had learned my lesson. (I had.)

It was actually the next day that I remember most. I went into school and with my hand in a bandage, I wrote the morning lesson with my left hand. The teacher, who I believe was a cross between a jackal and a coyote, yelled at me. "You need to make up your mind as to which hand your are going to write with," she said. I held up my right hand. "That doesn't matter. You alternate all the time and you need to decide." And then she added: "And look at these desks; do you see any of them set up for left-handers? So you should write with your right."

My classmates were tittering.

I thought she was the meanest person in the world.

But after my finger healed, I wrote with my right hand. Always. 

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