In the name of all that is good, can we just ban plastic-bodied pencil sharpeners? Please?
My daughter loves to draw. I have purchased several little sketchbooks and a multitude of pencils and pencil crayons to help feed her creative wants. Of course she also has the obligatory pencil case and a wide assortment of little plastic bodied pencil sharpeners. They come in loot bags, they find their way home from friends, they somehow magically appear in various places at various times. However I don’t think I have purchased a single one of them directly out of my own pocket. Why? Because I hate them.
Yes, hate is a strong word. The darn things are so colourful, they’re practical in that most of them provide a place for all those pencil shavings to go (although invariably they end up on the floor anyway when little one wants to empty them out). But still I hate them because they just don’t work.
Her own use of them always ends in frustration. She holds up the sharpener and the rounded, flattened or plain broken pencil crayon silently demanding some assistance. As the father-hero figure of course I try. I hold the pencil as squarely in that hole as humanly possible and slowly turn it. But it hardly ever ends well. The lead or pencil crayon core breaks off just inside the tapered wood end of the pencil or worse yet, a small piece of the lead gets stuck in the end of the sharpener itself.
If you’ve done this, don’t put it down to your own ineptitude. Yes, you were holding the pencil arrow straight. Yes, you were rotating it at a smooth enough cadence. Quit blaming yourself. The problem is not you.
I making a vow to fall off my wallet and buy ten metal-bodied sharpeners (maybe even Staedtler’s if I’m in an overly generous mood). I will sprinkle them throughout the house, and maybe keep two in the car (she’s got a sketchbook and pencil that stays in the car).
There’s even a good looking twin sharpener with a place to store and subsequently spill the shavings. It’s a Staedtler, so I’m assuming there are metal bodied sharpeners within it.
So let’s end the frustration and ban the plastic bodied sharpener once and for all. Let’s make the move to metal.
And listen, don’t even get me started on cheap pencil crayons…