On being a professional pencil-pusher

My first week as the Marketing & Promotions Coordinator for Pencils.com is coming to an end, and it’s been so much fun so far. Here are some of the highlights: Continue reading

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Going Pro

I consider myelf someone with a wide variety of interests and passions. Some of my passions, in no particular order, include literature, the arts, technology, Apple computers, and, of course, pencils. And it is really exciting when, as a friend told me recently, you can go from “passion to paycheck.”

It is with that in mind that I make an exciting announcement: As of January 2011, I will be working for our friends at CalCedar as the Marketing and Promotions Coordinator for Pencils.com! This is a really exciting opportunity, and I’m honored that I was even considered for the position, let alone accepted for it. Continue reading

Checking in

The brand-new Palomino Blackwing gift set. I got a good look at it during my visit. See end of post for a link.

Whew! It’s been a busy couple of weeks for this humble blogger. My blog silence is not an indication of having nothing to talk about, but merely me not having much time for anything! I went to California for a few days last week, to visit a friend and also to visit someone I’ve wanted to meet for a long time, WoodChuck.

I was fortunate to be in Stockton and hang out a little bit with Charles Berolzheimer, President and CEO of California Cedar Products. We all know the organization as the maker of California Republic-brand pencils, like the Golden Bear, the Palomino, and the oft-talked about Palomino Blackwing. They also own and operate Pencils.com, which sells products as well as maintains a large resource for pencil enthusiasts.

He showed me their offices, warehouse, some products we don’t see every day, and even took me to the Duraflame offices (his brother is the president and CEO), which are on a decommissioned ferry boat!

I even got a look at his amazing pencil collection. When your business is to supply cedar slats to many pencils companies globally, they send you lots of awesome samples. And since his family has been doing this for at least three generations, he has some incredible old pencils.

Of course, bad blogger that I am, I have no pictures to share with you. I told him that I want to spend two hours in his office with a DSLR camera, and I’d be set with blog posts for a year. Maybe that’ll happen next time I’m in Stockton.

I also went to San Francisco, rode some cable cars, ate some great food, and bought a few pencils and notebooks I can’t find in the midwest. Look for that soon!

I wanted to link to the Palomino Blackwing gift set, but apparently WordPress doesn’t let me place a link in a photo caption. Here is that link.

Yikes! pencils: Graphite-filled emblems of the 1990s

Like many bloggers in their late-twenties, I am proud to be a child of the 90s. I grew up on Nickelodeon, pump-up sneakers, beige Apple computers, Ecto-cooler Hi-C “juice”, and lots of bright, neon colors. And if, like me, you remember the 90s kid culture, you’ll probably remember this commercial from the Saturday morning cartoons:

That’s right. Yikes. I LOVED these pencils. It was a thrill for me every fall to go with my mom to K-Mart and buy school supplies, because she indulged me and let me get these colorful little sticks of fun. Just like the kid in the commercial, they were the opposite of boring. Everything about the design was crafted — from the contrasting (and often, conflicting) color scheme to the odd shapes, from the dyed wood to the bright rubber (and later, polymer) eraser.

And now, they have all but disappeared.

Continue reading