Wednesday Witterings

A scientific experiment…

 

A recent blog conversation has led me to ponder one of the great mysteries of life, and I’m seeking your help in solving it.

 

A definite lefty!
A definite lefty!

 

You see, when I raise a quizzical eyebrow, I always raise the left one because it goes higher than the right one. I recently became aware of the remarkable fact that the same applies to Professor VJ Duke – his left eyebrow rises higher than his right too!

 

The definitive quizzical eyebrow surely...
The definitive quizzical eyebrow… and another lefty!

 

Now the astonishing thing about this is that I am right-handed and he is left-handed, and yet this does not appear to influence our eyebrow-raising lopsidedness in any way!

 

...but Ian Carmichael will always be the definitive Lord Peter to me...
I think we’re seeing a pattern…

 

Which leads me to wonder – are higher left eyebrows one of the constants of life? Are we, as humans, genetically designed to always be leftly quizzical? A sinister thought…

 

Not another one!
What a show-off!

 

So please help me by sparing a couple of minutes of your busy life to sit at your mirror and raise each eyebrow in turn. Then come back and complete the poll below. Your answer will be kept in strictest confidence and under no circumstances will it be revealed to insurance companies, cloning laboratories, taxidermists or Area 51…

 

* * * * * * *

 

Aha! A righty! But then he's also not human. I rest my case...
Aha! A righty! But then he’s also not human. I rest my case…

 

Thank you so much for your participation! 😉

 

105 thoughts on “Wednesday Witterings

  1. I cannot move my eyebrows independently, so had to click ‘both the same’. Now I am worried I might be missing out. This is a skill I shall have to practice…

  2. Er ok..I was rather proud of my eyebrow raising ability (only left)..I had no idea others can do it too.. 😦 thanks for enlightening me though.. 😛 😀

  3. What an interesting query! I’m a left eyebrow raiser and honestly, I’ve always been kind of proud that I could do so. I think many can’t do it with either. And I’m pretty sure I started trying to see which, if any, worked that way from watching the original Star Trek TV show in my early youth. That Mr. Spock. And, by the way, I’m left handed. If that helps. It probably doesn’t.

    • Yes, I’m rather proud of my eyebrow-raising ability too – especially since I no longer seem able to touch my nose with the tip of my tongue. (Don’t know whether it’s my tongue that’s got shorter, or my nose.) I don’t understand why these skills aren’t more recognised by society – you’d think we should get awards or perhaps eyebrow-raising should be made an Olympic event…

  4. Very interesting, FictionFan! I’ll be watching for the final vote – and raising a quizzical eyebrow as I do so. And I do wonder what the handedness of your respondents will be; if your participants reflect the larger population, you’ll likely have mostly right-handed people. And if so, that really does make the left-eyebrow popularity interesting!

  5. *laughing lots and lots* Oh, how I wish I could raise the right one! That’d make me so proud of myself. Is that first picture Rafa? Bet you searched for a Darby one!

    I’d love to be a cyclops, wouldn’t you? But you wouldn’t see such…detail then. *laughs lots about genetically designed*

    Isn’t it called a unibrow?

    • Can’t you?! Oh *she said, smugly* I can raise either – but my left is higher. Poor you! Never mind – we can’t all be so talented! Hahaha! You know me far too well, you know, you know – you have no idea how long I spent failing to find a Darby one…

      I’d actually like to have three – one on the front and one above each ear. It would save all that head-turning energy…

      Oh, that’s probably just how you Americans spell mono…

      • I always knew you were talented in ways you never let on! *bangs head on now brown desk* No…not Darby!

        *laughing* Now that would be a sight. I wouldn’t let you, you know, you know.

        I was accused of such a thing once.

        • Oh, I have so many talents! For instance, I can play Three Blind Mice with one finger on the piano! (So long as someone reminds me which one is middle C…) In fact I can also play Way Down Upon the Swanee River! *puffs up with pride* Oooh, new desk? We must get it nicely banged into shape…

          I could hide the side ones with a nice pair of sideburns though… *hopeful face*

          No!!! Whoever it was was clearly jealous – no doubt you had just winked at his girlfriend!

          • *laughs* That’s better than I can do! And Swanee River? I’m proud, too, the sudden!! And you led me to believe you couldn’t play anything for anything!

            Hmm…Girls can’t grow sideburns.

            I actually quite liked it, you should know.

            • *preens* I’m thinking of doing a concert tour. My repertoire may be a little limited but who doesn’t love to sing along to Three Blind Mice!

              *cries* I know! Life is so unfair! But… I could knit some and glue them on!

              You did?! *raises right eyebrow in surprised befuddlement*

            • I’d sing! I think I know most of the words, I think. Do I get free tickets?

              *laughs* But you can grow your hair long and hide…the eyes!

              Of course. I’m an odd beast, you know.

            • You know, I could come on tour with you! I could be your opening act – I’d try hard not to upstage you… Perhaps we could do a duet – can you play Three Blind Mice?

              But then I wouldn’t be able to see…

              *nods emphatically*

            • You haven’t? Well, that’s understandable – it’s quite an advanced piece. But don’t worry – I’ll teach you the numbers. Did I mention I play by numbers rather than notes? Due to learning on an eight-note toy xylophone with numbers on the keys… I arranged it for piano myself. *sings – 3,2,1,3,2,1,8,6,8,5,3,1,2…*

              I am not wearing bowties on my ears!

  6. This is so spooky! I regret that I have challenged eyebrow muscles and like PorterGirl am unable to do that wonderfully sophisticated single brow raise – BUT there is no doubt that when I raise both together the left rises fractionally higher than the right. AND I’m left handed…so in theory it should be the other way round……….though, in truth I’m more ambidextrous – I do everything with a right dominant hand eg use scissors, sew, paint walls, use cutlery, mouse, like a right hander – but I can only write and draw with my left.

    However, I throw things (tantrums, hissy fits, darts, balls etc) with either hand, but I would catch with my right

    Does this mean I have a right hander’s eyebrow as well?

    PS how to you get a still of David Tennants eyebrow to do that. Madame bibilophile has a lot of moving pictures in that way and I wanna know how to do it!

    • Ah! Another botox girl, clearly! I expected as much! I can’t draw with either hand – well, only abstracts, anyway. But I’m totally right-handed – my left-hand really only exists to keep me balanced. No, the “interesting” (for want of a better word) thing is that eyebrows don’t seem to be linked to right or left handedness – I’m surprised I’ve never seen a University publication on this matter. I wonder if Yale University would give me a huge advance to write one. It’s a subject of vital importance, I feel…

      Goodness, I don’t make them – WAY beyond my skill level! Search for a gif – so in this case, Tennant eyebrow gif – and once you find one you like just treat it exactly as you would an image. But make sure your anti-virus is working – I’ve found a lot of these gifs lead to strange places…

      • You are SOOOOOOOOOOOO helpful and clever (flattery) I had absolutely no idea that that was what a gif was. I thought it was an image file which wasn’t a photo. Expect to see a rash of endless repetitive movements on my blog from here on in. I could go overkill on this, getting every word in a post to be a gif as well as the images, and make a post of stuttering stop and start frenzy coolcoolcoolcoolcoolcool

        And thanks for the warning, indeed. I can imagine!

          • Well, I am impressed that you did work it out and do it yourself at all, no matter how long it took. I just took the easier softer option of asking an expert who had done all the hard work for me. Which took no time at all.

  7. Now here is an interest! I am right browed, but left-handed. And Spock is half human. Where does that get us? I have a special eyebrow raising I used for my former students.

  8. Now I’m feeling all discombobulated — and put out, too. I must have been in another line when the eyebrow-raising talent was being handed out! And oh, my, that would’ve been sooo handy when Domer was a wee lad — it looks oh-so-much-more-intimidating, don’t you agree?!!

    • It does! In fact, I’m amazed that child-rearing can be done without it! You should have got a false one that you could raise by pulling a string in your pocket… perhaps it’s not too late… 😉

  9. I can’t raise my eyebrows independently…. or touch my nose with my tongue. Are you sure we’re related?

    • You can’t?! That does it! Clearly I’m right about the mix-up in the maternity ward – I’m sure I’m the long-lost daughter of a wealthy (and left-eyebrow-raising) Duke!

  10. I love your scientific research! I can raise both eyebrows or my left independently but not my right alone. I think someone should look into why our species has evolved this way! Did it somehow benefit our ancestors to smirk at each other with their left brows?

    • Haha! I’m so glad you’ve proved your humanity – I’m concerned that I seem to have several extraterrestial readers! Perhaps it goes back to the days when everyone wore monocles and we just got stuck like this…

  11. I am always jealous of people who can raise one eyebrow higher than the other – I tried to teach myself (though perhaps where I went wrong was to try raising the right one), but have had no success. Alas! And it’s such an effective expression, too.

  12. PVJ is left-handed too?! That’s an interest… I’m left-handed and left brow raising, although I can’t really do it! I just tried and looked like a freak. I’m concerned now because I just learned this morning that I can’t skip backwards either. I think I am the most uncoordinated human being ever!! Maybe I should have checked the Cyclops box… ho-hum.

    • He is! You creative people nearly always are *sobs a bit*. Haha! You can’t possibly look worse than my poor, lovely Rafa! Think of the wrinkles he’ll have when he’s old. You do know I’m now going to have to try skipping backwards, don’t you? If I don’t post for a while it will be due to broken limbs… and your fault!!

      • Too funny, FF! *laughing lots* Don’t go hurting yourself! We all need our book review fix that only you can provide and I shall’t be responsible. Skipping backwards is quite difficult to do. You wouldn’t think so, but it’s a surprise. I was trying to show a group of 6-year-olds and instead I made them laugh. Then I laughed at them when they couldn’t do it. It’s only fair, I say. Playground rules and all.

        I do love Rafa, too. He’s had a tough season. I wonder if this is due to an eyebrow raising strain? It’s quite possible…

        • I thought I’d start easy by practicising skipping forwards – it’s been a while! I suspect even that picture may cause a wave of heart attacks and general fainting amongst the residents of sleepy Kirkintilloch. But once I’ve mastered skipping backwards I confidently expect to make the front page of the local paper – it’ll be the most exciting thing to have happened here since Wee Jimmy McWhackle came in sixth in the National Haggis-Hurling Games!

          Haha! I suspect his game would improve dramatically if only he could find underpants that fit… 😉

    • After spending most of the last couple of days raising eyebrows I might have to go the botox route myself – or at the very least invest in some good wrinkle cream! Don’t want to end up looking like Rafa… 😉

  13. Thank you for not recommending another book. I would have run out of the room with both eyebrows raised.

    I can only raise my RIGHT eyebrow independently. The left one refuses to raise unless the right one goes with it. So clearly, my right eyebrow is trying to escape the annoying “me, too” lefty.

  14. While I think my left can go slightly higher if I work on it, I only have solid muscle control over the right. It’s the right that goes up in surprise/interest/whatever.

    More importantly: that David Tennant gif is hypnotic…

    • Alien!!! I’ve been stunned to discover just how many extraterrestials read the blog – I must alert the CIA…

      Haha! Isn’t it? And the worst thing is every time I see it I find myself compelled to do synchronised eyebrow-lifting with him! I think it’s becoming a tic… 😉

  15. Well, I can lift both my left and my right eyebrows, but they seem to go up the same amount! However, I do feel as though I am more inclined to lift the left when in a situation that requires eyebrow-raising.

    Thank you for bringing this question to light… I will now be asking all of my family members, coworkers, and neighbors to raise their eyebrows in the name of science!

    • Gosh, you know what this means, don’t you? You’re more talented even than David Tennant! I vote for you to be the next Doctor Who!! You should make a gif of yourself raising them alternately – I bet it would go viral!

      Haha! I must admit I have had much joy over the last couple of days knowing that people on three continents are all frantically raising their eyebrows – oh, the power of the blogosphere!! 😉

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