Antique Pencil

The year is 2010 and it is amazing to me that this antique wooden pencil is still being used in the world.  You would think that it would only be seen in the Smithsonian as a relic of the past.  But no, you will find it every day in the hands of students, teachers, doctors and every one else. (You can also find it protruding from someone’s ear.)

You would think that by now a child would ask, “Are you really sticking a pencil in that grinding thing to sharpen it?”  Kind of like the time when my daughters asked what that “thing” was when we were visiting a former Soviet block country.  I replied, “That thing, is a rotary phone.”  (For the younger audience – a rotary phone is a phone with a round disc on the front with holes for your fingers to go in so you can spin it to dial a number.)  See, that sounds so archaic, just like using a wooden pencil.  ((Side note – Why did they choose to use the numbers 911 for emergencies back then?  Your house was burning down while you waited for the little disc to return from dialing 9!))

Today we have mechanical pencils, which are the “touch tones” of the pencil world.  Just a click and instantly you have lead at the end of your pencil.  Even these have improved to where all you have to do is shake it to get new lead.  Imagine having five or more pencils all in one.  Load the mechanical pencil up with lead and then write to your heart’s content.

So with this new and modern mechanical pencil, why would you still use a wooden pencil?

Of course a mechanical pencil doesn’t quite look the same as a bright yellow wooden one sticking out of your head. :)