Ambidexterity is a rare ability few possess while left handedness is commoner than it is. Meanwhile, right handedness walks the streets like automobiles tour Lagos each day. However, my left handed brother will constitute the cynosure of my expressions today, as I’ll be dishing out 2 memorable experiences of our childhood when he was extremely ‘lefted’…
My brother’s engagements and activities revolved round the left part of his body. He picked dirt with his left hand, attended himself in the restroom with his left hand, ate with his left hand (including morsels) and also wrote with the same hand. It took Grandpa great effort to arrest his left hand during every meal with a bundle of clothes while uncles and aunties alongside mum and dad joined in the same strategy in the campaign to gradually stop him from handling edibles with his left hand.
Meanwhile his left leg was deadly when it came to football as he was always selected ahead of me during sets in those days due to the fact that father succeeded in flogging the ability out of me but not out of my brother’s defiant spirit and leg. He also had a very funny trait- Getting injured on the leftside of his body and I’ll be relating two of such experiences…
…. Dad had been out since the birth of that faithful day, while mum waited the sun’s full arrival before setting out, leaving us with stern warnings not to play around in the compound. As soon as she departed, myself and my brother like birds whose owner mistakenly left their cage open upon feeding them, stormed our big compound with glee. We raced through the lawns which our landlady then would kill an ant that dared trespass, thanks to her obvious absence. While we munched on the satisfaction freedom of marauding served us, we got to work, gathering planks, picking rotten nails hidden beneath the earth’s moist surface, disturbing sleeping earthworms, then proceeding to get our stored plastic paint lids to make unicycles powered by an armlength plank nailed to its heart to be motioned by our hands pushing them. (I’m sure some of us guys can relate.😉).
The nut trees in the compound sheltered us while I played the Master with my brother serving the Apprentice, providing me with building block pieces to hammer in the nails through the planks and lids. A block piece broke again and I said ‘Yinka bring another stone, this one has broken again o’. He answered grudgingly, complaining of the amount of building block pieces he had had to find and have all surrendered in pieces to the resistance of the plank to allow the nail penetration.
Minutes later, I had finished the first manual unicycle, which my brother cycled round in delight while I attended to the second one which was meant for myself. Just then, my brother rolled back, with sweat oozimg out of his skin pores, trickling down his gay face. Another block piece broke again and this time, I was sure my brother was not ready to help in getting another one as he was already basking in the ecstasy of cycling my hand made manual-mobile around.
Standing up to source for a stone, I released my back from the spyrogyra fested, weak, but arranged building blocks which had been serving as a rest for my back, while my hands mustered support from the middle blocks for me to gain stamina, only for the middle blocks to give way while the ones on top fell, with a large piece falling to sever my brother’s LEFT EAR!
I had never beheld such ghastly sight as his ear was dangling like a piece of flesh held with the tip of two fingers and dangled before a dog. It looked like it was going to fall off while thick blood joyed in a flow from the gash. Me who a moment ago was at work inventing a unicycle for myself became momentarily ransacked of ideas.
Many thoughts raced through my clueless mind. I had violated mum’s instructions and in the process my brother has been fatally injured, the landlady would rain fire for her useless but broken blocks, while dad wasn’t supposed to hear. I wished I could wake from the reality I wished I was sleeping in. My brother kept crying out while blood continued its procession.
I burst into tears too, mourning my brother’s dangling ear, while thoughts of impending punishments to be meted out by my parents fueled the tear producing organ in me as I ran towards the gate of our house. Through the large holes of the gate I shouted to a friendly welder who ran his vocation across of our gate. ‘Uncle Abbey, my brother’s ear has cut, please come and help us put it back’ I can remember myself shouting, believing he could fix the ear as he was an adult.
However the fact that he was busy coupled with the deafening noise of his roaring machine, costed me his attention as he probably thought I was crying due to my mum’s departure.
After minutes of shouting to no avail, I ran back to my brother while my heart seemed to beat me in the race, with my footsteps seeming like they thumped in my heart as I ran. I met him lying on the ground, with his shirt drenched in blood, while he feebly clutched his now irritating gash. He was obviously fizzling out.
I pulled him up and managed to drag him to the gate. On reaching the gate, I shouted on top of my voice to reach out to the welder who was now reclining on a detached and patched car seat. He turned towards my direction as his machine was now off. And at the sight of me crying and my fingers pointing to my brother’s fatal injury, he rushed across the road, effortlessly yanking the gate lock open and lifted my brother up in his arms, asking me in his language “Ki lo she aburo e” (what’s happened with your younger brother) as he rushed out.
My brother was rushed to the hospital down the road, while my mum and dad mysteriously soon appeared. And the next thing I remember was visiting him in the ward with his ear heavily plastered after stitching…
So anytime someone asked him then-‘Yinka what happened to your ear’ he’d reply “Bnock fen on my head”. He was a “Lefted” person who also had the ‘ L’ factor…
Funny isn’t it? 😂
He’s outgrown all those however… 😁
The only thing I can’t remember is if I got flogged or in any way punished.😀😂
Watch out for the next experience of my Extremely ‘Lefted’ brother . 😉😉
Bless Up! 😊