Bass Ackwards

The other day I was watching the sunrise in the west when it occurred to me that I do a lot of things ass backwards.

I should clarify that I wasn’t watching the sun rise in the west.  Just the sunrise.  Contrary to certain unkind (if perceptive) speculation, I do actually live on the same planet as everybody else.

It’s just that our house is oriented southwest/northeast on a bit of a slope, so the actual rising of the sun in the east is obscured by the houses behind us but we have a nice view of the mountains from our second floor to the west.

If you look west instead of east at sunrise on a clear day, you’ll see that as the sun rises (or as the world turns, if you want to be technically correct… but I’ve never been a soap opera fan), the shadow of the earth crosses the sky from east to west.  The rays of the rising sun form a pink band that chases the dark blue away, sinking lower and lower on the western horizon as the sun comes up.  When the pink band crosses the snowy mountains, they glow like fire.  It’s all over in a few short minutes, and I love to watch it.

But watching the sunrise in the west makes me backwards to the rest of the world, which is apparently my natural state.  This phenomenon has been brought to my attention a couple times in the past few weeks.

I’m right-handed.  Strongly right-handed.  Always have been.

Except I’ve always dealt cards with my left.  And I recently discovered I coil electrical cords to my left.  I didn’t realize it until Hubby and I butted heads over it.  (Well, I butted heads.  He’s the most tolerant guy on the face of the earth.)

There’s an easy way to coil cords neatly; you just add a little half-twist with each wrap.  In fact, Hubby’s the one who taught me that.  Which is why I was cursing the snarled-up disaster I discovered the last time I went to use the back yard extension cord.  I confronted him:  “What the hell is this?  You’re the one who taught me how to coil cords properly!”

And he said, “I did coil it properly, but it just twisted up in my hands.”

That’s when we discovered that I coil cords left-handed, which meant his right-handed half-twist made it into a full twist and a hell of mess.

He taught me how to tie a bowline knot long ago, too.  And I did it correctly for a while, but then I forgot and had to figure it out again on my own.  I still tie a perfectly secure bowline, but now it’s backwards.

When you think about it, “ass backwards” should mean my ass is to the back.  Which would mean I’m actually facing forward and going the right way.

I’m just going to cling to that interpretation.  I like it here in my own little world.

I’m off to watch the sunrise in the west now…

33 thoughts on “Bass Ackwards

  1. Maybe in your previous life you were left handed?
    Maybe you are unknowingly ambidextrous…which means you’re just smart
    AND the fact that you can claim to see the sunrise (not the sun rise) from the west just means another “I’m so cool you’re not” trophy for your already full “I’m cool and you’re not” trophy case 😀

    See? It’s just a matter of perspective! …I say to a published author of not one…but SIX and about to be SEVEN books….that’s


  2. Just when I thought I had the whole “rise in the east, set in the west” thing down pat, I had to go and read this post. Ah, well, there’s excitement in uncertainty. Thanks. 😉


  3. I can relate here. At least you COIL cords! I do something similar by adding a figure 8 to the cord as I coil it using the hand-to-elbow method I learned from my dad. Same end result, just faster for me.

    And I haven’t said ONE WORD about which way you wear your pink cape. Until now… 🙂


    • Y’know, I had a feeling I wouldn’t get away without some reference to that cape… 😉

      I use the hand-to-elbow method for coiling rope – fast and convenient, and it’s easy to make a nice long wrap in the middle to retain the whole thing. I realize this shows me for the freak I am, but I get huge satisfaction out of the sight of neatly coiled rope and cords. Kinda like loaves of freshly-baked bread – it just feels like a job well-done.


      • Bingo! If you could look into my garage, you’d see my extension cords near-perfectly coiled, figure 8 fashion, with those nice long wraps in the middle, hanging neatly from their assigned hooks. And you’d also see a relatively well-organized (but lived-in-looking) set of almost everything else (that won’t fit in the tool boxes) placed neatly (for the most part) in dollar-store clear plastic bins (with lids) on the shelves I’ve put up. And the things that are not on shelves are hung from item-specific brackets that I’ve made and installed. Am I some kind of neat-freak? Not at all. If you only knew, you’d scoff at the idea. 🙂

        But if I’m ever gonna find ANYTHING in all the stuff I’ve accumulated over the decades, it’s GOTTA be at least moderately well organized. Too many times I’ve spent hours searching for something I KNEW I owned and had to have at the time only to give up in disgust and just go buy another one. Sure enough, when cleaning up after that project, I’ll find the three or four of the same widgets I’d already bought at other times. That’s why you’ll see as many as six of certain things in my garage that most other people have only one or two of.

        But those days are over. Ish… 🙂


        • “Over. Ish.” Uh-huh. I’d love to say I have some form of organization, but I don’t – Hubby is not a “putter-awayer”. Between the two of us, we own at least eleven hammers of various persuasions, but just try to find a hammer around here when you need one! The only thing that works is for me to keep most of my tools in the trunk of my car and threaten him with death if he takes anything out. So far it’s working… ish…


  4. EGADS! Thank you for this posting about “right hand, work with left hand” issue. I have dealt with this same thing all my life (also being strongly right handed) and I may just print that out and put it on my wall. Next time someone, *ahem*, (hubbyhardhead) mentions my own “bass ackward” way of doing things I can just point to your article and tell him it happens to be a universal method used by many creative and cool people! HA! Love it!


    • Isn’t that weird? I’ve never understood it either. Maybe it’s because I’m so right-handed, and it takes more manual dexterity to hold the deck and push the cards off than to toss them on the table…?


  5. Well, with the exception of the electrical cord, your “ass backwards” style has served you well, considering how successful you are. I wouldn’t change a thing! (Except maybe your cord coiling…)


    • Aw, thanks! *blushes*

      Actually, we’ve solved the cord-coiling issue. Like all the other areas in which we’re incompatible, we’ve agreed to disagree… and bought another extension cord. 🙂


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