Monday, July 12, 2010

RETiREMENT PARTY for Jobi's pencil jar

July 7 was a momentous day at the JMM. Not only is 7/7 a fun date and program coordinator Elena Rosemond-Hoerr's birthday (celebrated with red, white and blue ice pops), but I also added the final pencil to my retired pencil jar sending the jar itself into retirement.

The lucky pencil that will fill the jar. Yeah, I know that the final pencil is an ugly yellow one, but it's getting stuck in the middle so no one will really see it.

Okay, let me explain. When you work with collections PENCILS are the only writing implement allowed (except when signing contracts and Deeds of Gift). And if you are forced to write with pencils, you might as well pick pretty, colorful ones.

Jobi places the final stub in the jar.

Back in 2006 I started a small experiment. Could I use one pencil from start to finish without losing it? It turns out, I could. So I signed and dated the pencil stub and placed it on my keyboard. Then I started pencil #2. And #3. That summer, interns Kristi, Kate & Jessica started working on the inventory project and wanted to add to the pencil stub collection. Pretty soon it was obvious that I needed a container to hold my growing collection. A mason jar from Austin Grill was the perfect vessel.

That's a lot of pencil stubs

And so for the last four years I've been adding pencil stubs to the jar*. The prettiest pencils are on the outer circle while boring yellow pencils are relegated to the center. 115 of them in total.

Jobi is very excited to pose with her filled pencil jar

So I guess the only question left is: How long will it take to fill jar #2?

Jennifer is excited to see the filled pencil jar. She's working on a jar of her own.
*I don't claim to take credit for retiring them all by myself. Interns and staff have contributed, (check out our blog posts from PENCIL WARS 2009) signing and dating their own stubs. And I am not opposed to finding half-used pencils to finish off. Pretty much the only rules are: no abusing the pencil sharpener and golf pencils can't be added to the overall total, though their stubs can go into the jar.

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