I have a lot of pencils.
Three overflowing mugs.
I lose them
a lot, and my supply needs to be replenished
often. The mugs, somehow
, accumulate more pencils by the week, although I haven't bought any in a good five months
. I can't remember the last time I bought pencils, to be honest. They turn up everywhere I look.
Long pencils, short pencils, everything in between. Pencils with full erasers
and pencils with no erasers. Sometimes the ferrules
are dented and sometimes the ferrules are gone. A lot of pencils have things printed on them - "Adelphia
Business Solutions", "Chanute Air Force Museum
", "Community Education 558-3104". Some are souveneirs
. Some are promotional items
. Some are just novelties
. But they're all my pencils. Over the years, I can't remember ever having run out of things to write with
- although I've frequently been at a loss
for a writing utensil, the mug (or case, or box) of pencils at home always had plenty to spare. Back in the earlier grades
, I'd find quite a few. Not just pencils, either - I found pens
even. By third grade the crayons became less plentiful, replaced by the more sophisticated colored pencils
. Mechanical pencils
started coming up around that same time. But pens were a luxury
reserved for the older students
. They were unforgiving
in their treatment of errors, and inconvenient to use until about fifth grade - which was when everyone had to use them. As I grew older, the steady stream of pencils
began slowly dwindling
, eventually coming to a slow trickle
. In middle school, everybody carried their things with them
from class to class. The occasional pen or highlighter
could be found kicked into a corner, but supplies were kept fairly organized. In high school, of course, some actual effort
had to be put into school. And more rights and responsibility in life meant nobody gave much of a damn about their pencils anymore. And neither did I, although I wasn't above stooping
to recover a lost writing utensil. Nowadays, I can go to the store
and buy a case of fifty pencils for a vastly insignificant sum. I don't see myself needing to anytime soon.