Wednesday, April 1, 2015

MY VIEW #35 - Pencils

(Editor's note: This "My View" is out of sequence because Mom had several posts about Christmas which I thought would be more appropriately posted next December.)

"A small, slender stick of wood or metal, with a core of graphite, used for writing or drawing. Age unknown." Official data in dictionary.

My first pencils were about 3 inches long. My Dad cut long pencils in half, so they were short. In Kindergarten, where we learned our letters and numbers, all pencils were short. These had no erasers on the tip. We got those in Grade 3.

We didn't know then that we were using soft leaded pencils. I supposed there was a reason, but hard leaded ones didn't come until later. That was something. I liked to draw, and one teacher showed me how important soft lead was, and hard lead too.

"Indelible" pencils were different, as the marks could not be erased, which was fun. The core of these pencils was purple (a different mixture, I guess) and if it got wet it was very purple, indelible.

Then there were "Eversharps," a great improvement. A fancy metal pencil, 5 or 6 inches long, you could twist the top and the long 3" lead would come down, for writing. These were great and we called them propelling pencils. I still have one and a box of leads. Lots of real gold and silver ones were made. Gold was cheap then, $35 an ounce.

"Carpenters" pencils are different, flat instead of round, with the same lead core. They are flat to lie next to wood, to measure, I still have one, and a dozen HB pencils.

That's it for now. did you learn anything from this?

January 2007