For the Person who Has Everything: Artisanal Pencil Sharpening

6a00d8341c630a53ef0133f2fb4d46970b-800wiCarolyn Kellogg over at the LA Times Blog, Book Jacket:

David Rees, the man behind the popular political comic Get Your War On, wants to sharpen you a pencil. Slowly. Attentively. And with a carefully selected sharpener or blade that suits the pencil best. If there are movements for slow food and slow reading, why not for slow writing implements?

“With an electric pencil sharpener, a pencil is meat,” Rees said. “It's this thoughtless, Brutalist aesthetic. For me, it's almost a point of pride that I would be slower than an electric pencil sharpener.”

This is how Rees' artisanal pencil sharpening works: You might send him your favorite pencil, but Rees more often selects and sharpens a classic No. 2 pencil for his clients, he promises, “carefully and lovingly.” He slides the finished pencil's very sharp tip into a specially-sized segment of plastic tubing, then puts the whole pencil in a larger, firmer tube that looks like it belongs in a science experiment. Throw it at a wall, he says, and it won't break. The cost? $15.

Rees lives in New York's Hudson Valley, a region full of tiny vineyards and cheese makers and old-school butchers and bookbinders. It's a place where people take the time to create things by hand.