Folders and Sharpees and Pens! Oh, my!

“My childhood smells like a box of Crayola crayons.” – Terri Guillemets

Right after the last cherry bomb explodes on the Fourth of July, the ads that touted Independence Day sales on flip-flops and patio umbrellas switch gears. It’s time to think Back-to-School. Those words once stabbed me with panic. Now, I calmly peruse the flyers from Office Depot and Staples, coveting everything I see. I have never been able to resist the lure of fresh new school supplies.

I love shiny new notebooks whose yellow, or red, or blue, or green covers are without tattered corners, whose lily-white sheets of paper are unscribbled-on. I like spiral notebooks with perforated pages so that anything I tear out doesn’t come with the frizzies. My favorites, though, are those black-and-white marbly composition books – the ones that really look old-school. I like pens that still have their caps, Mr. Sketch markers that haven’t dried up to create only pale squiggles of their once-juicy colors, and Crayolas with pointy heads. Pencils are good, too, especially if they have sharp points and clean erasers that don’t leave a smudge. An electric pencil sharpener? Yes, please.

I like pocket folders in rainbow colors, thick packs of filler paper, and three-ring binders that clack to attention when I spring them open. While I can’t remember when I had a need for Elmer’s Glue, I admire its jaunty orange cap as yet unclogged. Sticky notes are perfect for adding margin notes to books I’m reading. Pop-up Post-it flags are just plain fun. I esteem a strong stapler, one with a solid “kachunk” that signals its firm grip on my pages. My favorite paper clips are the jumbos, especially if they’re multi-colored, but what I really like are those heavy-duty clasps that can grasp a stack of pages without danger of escapees. I’m a pretty big fan of a muscular hole-puncher, too.

Then there are file folders in cute prints, like the ones with old books all over them or a chevron stripe in neon colors, all ready to be organized. For that, I’d need some labels. I’ve never had a label-maker, so I’m perfectly okay with the kind you peel and stick on. It seems I can never have enough Scotch Magic Tape. And, it’s always wise to have a stack of yellow legal pads on hand or a tiny little notebook I can slip into my purse or a new fine-point Sharpee or two.

Not that I really need anything at Office Depot, but right now they’re selling packs of three by five cards for one penny. One penny! Limit three! And ten-packs of ballpoint stick pens – with caps, even – for a penny. My total bill would be less than a dime. I think I gotta go.


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