As I was walking the dog this morning in clothes that were too skimpy for fifty-five degrees and misting, I had a flashback.

I caught a whiff of mimeograph paper. That sweet smell of purple inked tests dancing with the graphite and warm wood shavings of freshly sharpened pencils and the smell of fear that only a third grader can emit. Students stare studiously at the page before them. I write a big number three in the plum box to the right of a question and contemplate again whether I’ve come to the correct answer. Handing in the test with ample time to spare, I’d sit with my head down until the teacher exclaimed, “Pencils down!”

Life was so much simpler then.


2 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by breadwild on July 20, 2010 at 8:04 am

    There was the smell of the mimeograph, the sound of them being run off, and then the almost obligatory crease in the still wet sheet. Thanks for the memory, but thought those we gone long before your time.


  2. Posted by Yo momma on July 20, 2010 at 3:38 pm

    oh no she grew up in the country where we used the mimeograph until 89, when I spent months running off master copies for the lower grade teachers until the last of the ink ran out! or the machine finally broke down. No more budget for mimeographs- time to move to the new fangled “photocopier” with no real wonderful wild purple inked fingers and hands!


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