Left handed and left over

WANTED: one dish-washing female, average height. Must be left-handed.

A left-handed man will do, if he has small hands. And is prepared to do the washing up.

I can save us both a fortune.

There are 297 left-handed rubber gloves spilling out of the cupboard under my kitchen sink.

They are taking on a certain malevolent personality. I no longer dare open the door in case they leap out and throttle me.

It’s because my wife is right-handed.

It’s a little-known fact that right-handed rubber gloves last 30 seconds, while their left-handed cousins will be clogging up landfill long after civilisation has succumbed to the cockroach and strangler fig.

The way I see it, if I could match my wife’s handsize with someone who is left handed, I could take our 297 spare gloves, match them with their leftover right-hand gloves, and we’d have 148 pairs each. We’d have one glove left over, of course, but only for as long as it took our new business partner to do the next load of washing up.

And if we can keep the partnership going we’ll save thousands of dollars in our lifetimes.

It’s a rule with rubber gloves (the right-hand ones, anyway) that they self-destruct during the first load of washing up. The top of a finger drops off and your hands are left feeling the same as your body does inside a wet suit.

I think the manufacturers do it on purpose. I’m certain they can make rubber gloves thin as gossamer that would survive a nuclear holocaust, if they wanted. But then we’d only buy one pair and they’d go broke.

But you’d have thought some corporate scientist would have come up with some kind of innovative solution by now.

Why not make the right-hand glove tougher, for example? Or why not put two right-hand gloves in every packet?

How about reversible rubber gloves, so you could turn the left-hand one inside out and it would become a right-hand one.

And don’t tell me it can’t be done. Look at the supermarket shelves… they have rubber gloves every colour of the grease trap; they have them with linings to help them slide on your hand; they have them with pimply surfaces to help you grip things better; they have them with short cuffs and long cuffs (but never quite long enough, have you noticed, to enable you to retrieve the Lego from the lavatory without having sewage backwash over your wrist and fingers).

They have come up with a vast range of silly tricks to persuade you to buy rubber gloves, but they haven’t solved the one conundrum that plagues every household — what to do with a cupboard full of left-hand rubber gloves.

We could throw them away, of course, but that’s too simple. And anyway, there’s nothing wrong with them! They’re hardly used. If I could find the left-handed person I seek, my wife could create pristine new pairs with which to clean the bath, or explore the cat’s bum, or change the engine oil.

The environmental benefits would be enormous.

And I could open the cupboard under the sink again without fearing for my life.

My wife says I’ve never opened the cupboard under the sink in my life, not even before rubber gloves were invented, because everything in there represents a job that needs doing; but that’s not the point.

So… if you’re a left-handed person hoarding an elephants’ graveyard of right-handed rubber gloves, please get in touch.

I like to do what I can to make my wife’s life easier.