Wednesday, March 30, 2016

national pencil day, my pencil collecting obsession

It's true, there is a national day for everything! National pencil day is March 30th, today. This wouldn't be as cool to me if I didn't love pencils so much, which I do. I started collecting pencils when I was in 5th grade. Kind of an odd thing to collect, I know! I got a pencil with a miniature snow globe on the the end instead of an eraser for Christmas at school. This snow globe had real water in it and a little winter scene. It was pretty cool for my 5th grade self and I was hooked. I vowed never to sharpen it and I begun keeping all sorts of cool pencils I came across.
I love writing with pencils, I love the sharp tips and the way they help with my handwriting. It's not great, it's pretty sloppy actually, but a freshly sharpened pencil sure makes me feel like my handwriting is better.

They don't make pencils the way they used to. Today, most pencils are covered in a shrink wrap kind of thing, and not painted, to add the decoration. I like the regular wood ones now to write with, but the ones I find in the Target Dollar Spot are fun to use too, just more of a pain to actually sharpen because of the plastic covering.
My very favorite pencil is a mechanical pencil. This one has been used so much that it's barely hanging together.

A few cool facts about pencils:

Each year, March 30th is National Pencil Day.  Hymen Lipman received the first patent for attaching an eraser to the end of a pencil on this day in 1858.

The majority of pencils made in the United States are painted yellow.  It is believed that this tradition began in 1890 when the L & C Hardtmuth Company of Austria-Hungary introduced their Koh-I-Noor brand, named after the famous diamond.  This pencil was intended to be the world’s best and most expensive pencil.  Other companies then began to copy the yellow color so that their pencils would be associated with the high-quality brand.

Johnny Carson regularly played with pencils at his Tonight Show desk. These pencils were specially made with erasers at both ends to avoid on-set accidents.  

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