Friday, August 21, 2009

First-world problems

I have recently been introduced to the term "first-world problems", used to describe those problems that sure enough do feel lousy when we have to experience them, but taken in the context of people who struggle for food, safety and clean drinking water, are a little less than earth-tilting. Ie.,

--ice cream melts too fast
--waiter forgets your wine, is rude when reminded
--ugly hotel room
--wallet in other pants
--trying to switch the hand you use your mouse with in order to stave off carpal tunnel syndrom and Altzheimer's disease makes you grouchy and confused

I'm trying to do that last one and it's making me very unhappy in a distinctly first-world way. On Wednesday, I did *one hour* of left-handed mousing, and when I got into bed that night and let my body go slack, the mouse-fingers on my left hand immediately started to twitch. Today, I've been at it about 3 hours, and I think I might go insane.

Now, I'm a prime target for carpal tunnel, since I'm in front of a computer an incredible number of hours, don't have an ergonomic setup, plus often use a laptop. There's nothing I don't think to be done about the laptop; I've been trying to use the touchpad with my left hand, but since it's right there in the middle, I immediately forget add allow my pushy pushy right hand to take over.

It's easier on the desktop, since I have an actual mouse that I have moved over to the left side of the keyboard. However, it is a very strange mouse since it the one associated with the drawing pallette I use in my work. Mine's not that nice, I just wanted a clear picture, but it is a pricey item and clearly it's not going to be replaced just so I can have a left-handed mouse to go with it, even if there was such a thing (wow, another first-world problem: my expensive technology not quiiiitte as nice as some).

So now I am left-clicking with my *ring-finger*, probably the weakest part of my body besides, like, my hair. Hence the twitching, I guess. I'm trying to feel the new, Alzheimer's-preventing neural pathways being formed as I do this, but mainly I just feel like I'm working really slowly as it often takes a couple tries to click on what I want. Also my ring-finger is tired. Also, several times when I got really involved with something, I discovered myself 45 degrees pivoted in my chair, gripping the mouse with my right hand through now will of my own. Also, for some reason, my right hand hurts; sympathy pains?

A friend of mine actually successfully made this switch, which is what inspired me to try, but that friend is superhuman in any number of regards, and I'm starting to think this is one of them. Maybe I'll just learn Suduko??

Why not smile?


saleema said...

When I was a kid, I used to be weirdly fascinated with the idea of becoming ambidextrous and would definitely have described writing with both hands as being one of my life goals. :)

I'm excited and fascinated that there's now an official healthy excuse for trying! My mouse has been acting up of late, though, so I wonder how long I'll last...

Ransermo said...

You are probably better served by memorizing all the key commands, reducing the amount that you use the mouse. Also, there are a series of yoga style exercises that help the typing muscles. The other option is getting a electronic tablet, that uses a pen-like device to do mouse functions.