#1 – I Write in Pencil
I was a teenager during the era of typewriters so it was either type it or write it. Since I squeaked through grade 9 typing with a (pity) grade of 52%, writing by hand was my only option.
Computers and word-processing software were non-existent when I was in school so I took pencil to paper.
Note: I LOVE word processing. Back in 1988, I once typed the same two page letter 27 times for my asshole boss because he kept changing it. It was not even work related and after version 27, I told the other boss that I was not going to type that fucking letter again.
I like to write in pencil. I like the way pencil feels on paper. I find I have no control over ink, it’s way too slippery.
When I was 15, I had an independent thought and decided that I preferred to write in pencil. I like to be able to change my mind many many times and erase my thoughts, and re write them and then erase them and then re write then again. Over and over again until I articulate my jumbled ideas into a coherent sentence.
The strangest thing about my love of pencil writing was the reactions my teachers had to my choice. You would have thought that I had announced a plan to submit all future assignments and tests in kitten blood. I think there might have been a teacher/parent meeting (well also about other things, like why did I suck in school, but pencil writing deviance was, no doubt, discussed). Wait, you have students coming to school drunk and/or stoned, dropping out, fighting, struggling with basic literacy and math, and you are worried about me writing in pencil? Yeah, three words:
PICK YOUR BATTLES.
A few weeks ago, I found myself in possession (perhaps from the supply closet at work) of some pencils made of recycled paper. One day I was procrastinating writing a blog post, so I took a match to one to see if the paper pencil would burn. Six matches later, the pencil did not burn, I had to clean up a mess and still think of another activity to delay my writing.
Now that I think of it, perhaps the idiot teachers astutely recognized my future criminal tendencies, but I suspect they were just jealous of my steadfast approach to writing, erasing, re-writing, erasing, re-re-writing the perfect sentence.
I owe this all to the humble pencil.