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For some of us, Middle School Pencil Combat was a way of life.
What happens when middle school kids have spare pencils and too much time at the bus stop? This:
Back in my sixth and seventh grade years of school, pencil fighting was all the rage. It was this game where two guys squared off, each wielding his trusty pencil. The objective? To take turns trading blows, one holding his pencil flat by the ends while the other struck it with his own. And so, the battles ensued until one pencil was split in two.
It sounds a bit crazy, doesn't it? I mean, it was a rather primitive and surprisingly destructive game for something so simple. Yet, we spent a good chunk of our time perfecting the art of pencil fighting. We became masters of the craft, honing our techniques and tactics to reign supreme.
We figured out how to snap our fingers just right to give our strikes maximum power. Furthermore, we added a little twist of the wrist to amplify the force. And then there was the infamous "Cherry chop," a sneaky strike that often got us into trouble. We even got creative with our pencils, pulling out the erasers and crushing the metal ring to create a makeshift blade. With this makeshift weapon, we chipped away at our opponents' pencils, strategically stripping them down to the lead.
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For some reason, the girls in my school had no interest in this madness. And honestly, when you looked at my Trapper Keeper full of broken pencils, it was hard to argue against their point of view. But let me tell you, despite all the broken pencils, we had a blast. There was something oddly satisfying about forcing your opponent to sacrifice one of their prized pencils. And the thrill of that final strike that shattered their pencil, well, that was something to behold.
You had to be careful though, especially not to use your precious Atari pencils for these battles. Those were off-limits, of course. So, as silly as it might seem, pencil fighting was a source of pure, unadulterated fun. It was all about the strategy, the competition, and the rush of victory. Yeah, looking back, it was pretty darn awesome.