I personally make the world a more difficult place

Filed under: slice,useless @ 13:10

This is not something I’m proud of; this is something I’m admitting: I make people’s lives harder.

As a reminder, automobiles (typically) drive on the right hand side of the road in .us. This is something that has been ingrained into my consciousness starting from the day I was taken home from the hospital as a newborn. It’s one of those bits of cultural DNA that structures the way society intraäcts.

Two people walking toward one another in .us also tend to veer to the right to avoid collisions. Whether the law of driving on the right came before or after this pedal social mos is irrelevant; they are certainly highly correlated. People in this country strongly expect pedestrians beset with such a situation to veer right, and they justify (rightly so) this expectation by citing the driving laws.

I always veer left.

I can’t explain why. I’ll see the imminence of such a situation, think to myself, “this time, make sure you head right”, look my opposite straight in the eye, and take a left. I’m not being spiteful or intentionally disruptive. It’s just that there’s some fundamental mental disconnect that happens between understanding the appropriate thing to do and getting my body to actually do it. My legs seem to have a peculiar yen for leftward motion.

So to all those I’ve ever unintentionally forced into the dance of the sidewalk (and to all those whom I will thusly encounter in the future), I apologize.


    jjk 07.20.2005 @ 13:51

    Why do you hate America?

    Paul.za 07.20.2005 @ 13:54

    You’d feel right at home in parts of the world that drive on the left — because, indeed, people automatically veer to the left there. I’ve had to train myself to veer right while in the US.

    Of course, that leads to the obvious question: I’ve managed, so what’s wrong with you, eh?

    Adam 07.20.2005 @ 17:08

    I bet I can break you of this habit, but it unfortunately involves, er… breaking you. You see, when people veer in front of me while walking, I tend to knock them down if I’m not paying attention. So, I propose that we walk toward each other along a sidewalk with some cute girls sunbathing to the side (you’ll have to wear blinders so that you try to avoid me and veer left as normal). I’ll knock you down. If we do this enough times, I think you’ll start to get the hang of veering right.


    most people veer to the right in my land-of-left-driving. I think it has something to do with foot dominance, which is mainly on the left foot.

    Which hand do you write with?

    MDA 07.25.2005 @ 12:05

    I’m right handed but left eyed. I think I typically step forward with my right foot first… but I’m not sure. I just tried to figure it out, but I’m thinking about it too much.

    xaosseed 07.26.2005 @ 11:04

    You need to have the hemispheres of your brain swapped over, betcha that’d solve the problem

    James 07.28.2005 @ 20:13

    I bet your right leg is longer than your left leg, so it feels natural.

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