By Jeff Larabee
I recently volunteered in my daughter’s 2nd grade classroom. It happened to be a math test day – a test that is taken first thing in the morning. As the teacher gave instructions to prepare for the test, Lorenzo the Sharpener arose and strode to his station – the pencil sharpening station. Lorenzo the Sharpener is the annointed pencil sharpener for Room 3 and boy is he proud of his job! When you’re getting ready to take a math test everybody is Lorenzo’s friend. As a long queue formed next to Lorenzo he began to work that lead and wood like a concert pianist playing Beethoven. At one point he had pencils in both hands and was sharpening two pencils at a time in two different sharpeners . . . it was a wonder to behold!
Kids love pencils and go through massive amounts of them. But the only adults who still use pencils are your hair stylist and your dog groomer as they “pencil you in”. Those folks know you might change your mind and they are ready. But in almost all other facets of life no one uses pencils. Never ever. With pen or even Sharpie we draw our line in the sand, we don’t alter, adapt or reconsider. Our words are now a matter of public record and whether or not that “first draft” of our thoughts was a good one or not we feel compelled to stick by that first draft.
But not those 2nd graders. They love changing their minds! If you think kids have a lot of pencils you should see their eraser collections! Need a last minute gift for a young student? Give them a few erasers. Those erasers will be happily wittled away to dust within a few weeks from all the changes and improvements being made.
As we, the amazing La Mesa community, begin to take flight into 2020 are we changing our mind? Are we adapting, altering, improving or reconsidering? Let us try to improve on our first draft in everything we do. So let’s load up on pencils . . . and don’t forget the erasers!