Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Rotation, Rotation

I appear to be in nerdy over-analysis mode for the moment, so here we go again.

The other day, I was writing with a ballpoint and realized I was rotating it slightly--sort of rolling it to the left--at the end of each line, or whenever I lifted my hand for a moment. It's something I do--something we all do, I assume--with wooden pencils without even thinking about it, so the point wears evenly, but it has no real purpose with pens except to sort of reseat your grip every so often. The only reason I noticed was because the clip on this particular pen kept getting in the way now and again, and I finally figured out it was coming around the rotation every so many lines and rubbing against my hand--until I rotated it away again.

I do this with mechanical pencils, too, to the point where when I picked up a Uni Kuru Toga pencil (which rotates the very point of the pencil for you to maintain a consistent point), we fought--because I couldn't break myself of the habit of turning the pencil, even though it was rotating for me.

Now...obviously I don't do this with fountain pens, or they'd stop working every time I got to the end of a line. So my subconscious apparently has it figured out that they're another species. Why, then, does it lump most other pens with pencils, I wonder?

Interestingly, I appear to rotate pencils to the right and pens to the left. That's even weirder.

Are you a rotator? Do you keep rolling in a particular direction or is it random? Does your brain distinguish between pencils and pens?

5 comments:

Joe V said...

I'm a pencil rotator, but not a ballpoint pen rotator. I rotate pencils to the left, and I'm right handed. It's weird, I know, and you're very observant in pointing this out.

Little Flower Petals said...

Thank you for using the word "observant" rather than, well, other words....

Pencil rotation is one reason I can't help kind of preferring the plain old hexagonal style rather than round or triangular pencils: hexagonal pencils ratchet nicely from one position to another.

Bill M said...

Now I need to pay attention when I use a pencil. I know I rotate pencils. Did ever since 7th grade when I first took a drafting class. Now which direction do I twist them??????

Don't rotate pens. If I am not using a technical pen I use a fountain pen.

notagain said...

I've long done this with ball-point pens because of clumping ink on the tip. I don't know why it bugs me on the pen but not on the page. Go figure.

Little Flower Petals said...

You know, I think you've nailed it: I rotate because a lot of ballpoints have the clumping ink issue. The one I was working with at that moment didn't, but...yeah, it's messy, and it bothers me, and I think that's why I developed the habit.