September 22nd, 2006

piano

They were vacation days

But they sure weren't idle days

My plans for a week off having been scotched by E-Rate and Municipal WiFi, I did manage to take yesterday and today off.

Yesterday I spent on the phone with work, getting some chores out of the way (a big dump run, mowing the lawn), and then took some time in the afternoon to have lunch with my folks and get whumped at Scrabble by my mother.

Today started with two hours of hammering out a document for work, then spending the balance of the day with matociquala demolishing and carting away the rotten rafters from our shed. Alas, this was one of those jobs where the more we took apart, the more we realized needed to be taken apart. The bottom line is that there is more demo to be done to get at a rotten sill, and a partially rotted wall. A highlight of the afternoon was discussing whether the damage for a sledge hammer should really be at least 2d4, 'cuase 1d6 just wasn't enough. We finished up by setting new (temporary) rafters. ashacat helped me get the big blue tarp put back on and secured in the deepening darkness after dinner. Phooey.

It is a wonderful thing to be in the company of strong, handy women. :-)
  • Current Music
    Richard Bone - Saiyuji
piano

Happydance

While matociquala and I were taking a late lunch today, the postmistress dropped off something wonderful. I am now in possession of two dozen new Mongol pencils.

You see, the Mongol is the pencil. Woodclenched -- meaning it has a body of real wood -- and possessed of a unique "lead". The "lead" is a patented mix of graphite and a particular clay found in Mongolia (hence the name and the yellow color); it both writes smoothly and holds a point for a very long time. The Mongol is to mere pencils as the IBM Model M is to other keyboards.

Originally made by Eberhard Faber starting in the 19th century, the Mongol was the pencil by which all others were measured (right down to the yellow paint). A Dixon Ticonderoga dreams of being a Mongol when it grows up. The line disappeared from the US when the giant Newell corporation "rationalized" it's 1990s acquisitions and axed several competing pencil lines it had bought.

Now, after a long absence, you can again by new Mongols. Pencil Things now carries Mongols made under license in the Phillipines.

I sharpened one of the new arrivals and took it for a spin. It's the real deal. I am a happy man.
  • Current Music
    Richard Bone - Saiyuji