Saturday, December 12, 2015

Something Sinister

Joe Nemecek brought these two along for show and tell at the DC Show last August:

Both are “Palmer Method” pencils made by Eversharp.  One matches the jade example I wrote about here some time ago (, but in black, while the other is in the same hard rubber found on my “Gregg” example featured in that same article.

The hard rubber example has a Palmer Method stamp, as well:

However, it wasn’t until I photographed Joe’s pencils side by side that I noticed something I didn’t notice when I posted that last article:

The lettering stamped on the clips run in opposite directions.  That’s more than a curiosity: it’s downright funny.

In wood pencil collecting circles, one area of specialization is in the area of “left handed” pencils.  Normally, pencil imprints run as they do on the hard rubber Palmer Method shown here, with the lettering running from the writing end towards the eraser.  That is so when you are holding the pencil or pen in your right hand and using it – as God and Dr. Palmer intended – you can read the lettering.

However, if the lettering runs from the eraser end forward, when you hold it in your right hand as if to write, the lettering will be upside down.  Since the lettering on these isn’t upside down when you are writing with your left hand, wood pencil guys would call this a “left handed pencil.”

Now why would a pencil marked “Palmer Method,” which mandated writing with one’s right hand regardless of whether one is left-handed, be marked with such an imprint?


Chthulhu said...

I would have thought that things would be just the opposite, and would expect the lettering to be rightside-up for everyone *except* the writer, thus advertising the instrument's maker. The writer would, presumably, already know who made the instrument. :-)

Vance said...

You want to know why? I'll tell you why: because some left-handed Eversharp employee sought revenge for snarky remarks like "As God...intended."

Did I ever show you the Wahl metal pen I got from Al Mayman? He wrote me an email that said "You need to get this pen, it's got your name on it." Well, not only did it have my name on it, but it was written in left-handed style like that E'sharp pencil. Maybe it was the same employee at work?