Re: All this hand wringing

Subject: Re: All this hand wringing
From: Valerie Archambeau <varchamb -at- MIDWAY -dot- UCHICAGO -dot- EDU>
Date: Fri, 29 Jul 1994 11:56:26 -0600

I'm not sure exactly were I stand on "-hand" writing. But before this gets
out of hand, I thought I'd better speak up. Since I don't have any of my
style manuals handy, this will all be my random speculations and opinions.

On one hand, "right-hand" and "left-hand" provide a visual anchor; a point
of reference, if you will. I think think that, hands down, it is a
"warmer" phrase than "right corner". And since many of us seek to create
friendlier documentation by using a more casual syle (for instance, "you"
and not "the user"), I believe "right-hand" helps to lend a hand in this

On the other hand, the desire for precision in our writing (not necessarily
exemplified in *this* message) would demand that we cut our right-hand off
(if it offends us).

So I suppose that the proper use of -hand(s) is contextual depending upon
your audience and subject matter (or if it's the first date).

And that is my -hand stand.

Just my $0.2 while I have some time on my hands. =^)

varchamb -at- midway -dot- uchicago -dot- edu

P.S.: My apologies for this post. I got little sleep last night, having
spent serveral hours in ER--my husband had a deep cut on his left-hand.


>> Why is it incorrect to say "lower right-hand corner"?

>I don't use the "-hand" part because it is my impression (or perhaps "guess"
>instead of "impression") that "right-hand" and "left-hand" are
>language-specific idiom. I wouldn't expect people who speak English as a
>second language (part of my audience) to be familiar with the expression.
>Or, I would at least expect that "lower right" might seem more natural to them.

>Also, the "-hand" doesn't add anything ... why use it?

>Yvonne DeGraw

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