Over the past 24 hours I have acquired what appears to be carpal tunnel syndrome in my right hand: numbness, sharp, shooting pains, the whole bit. My current state led me to wonder.. what will become of me if I can’t type?
This brought me to George Perec’s masterpiece, La Disparition (“The Void”), a French novel written in entirety without the vowel e, and subsequently translated into English by Gilbert Adair, also avoiding e‘s. A short excerpt can be found here.
So of course I began trying to write using only the words available to my left hand. After about 10 minutes of complete frustration, I realized that Perec’s book was cake compared to this task. He only gave up one letter!
In possibly my last act as a two-handed typist, I wrote a perl script to parse an English word list into left-handed words, to help me in my new life. While I was at it, I went ahead and made the right hand version as well (for those with the opposite strain infliction). As it turns out, it’s much better to lose the left than the right: