Tapped Out

By: Max Reid

Now, I’m usually not the kind of person to be bothered by pet peeves. Sure, when some morons are talking to their friends in the middle of the hall I get a bit annoyed, but I usually get over it a few seconds later. Stuff like that doesn’t even really bother me. But this… oh this… this was the breaking point for me.

AP World History is one of my favorite classes. Not only do I have a great teacher, but great peers who engage heavily in the class and leave great insight. Not last week though.

It was a melancholic Friday morning in AP World History, and we were learning about the Ottoman Empire. I was diligently jotting down notes in my beat up notebook I’ve had since freshman year, and kept one eye at the powerpoint at the front of the class and another eye on my notes to make sure they were organized. You see, when I’m in note-taking mode, I’m kind of in my zone. It takes a lot to break me from the focus I have, and at that very moment, everything was going perfectly. Little did I know that what would happen next would change my life forever.

Tap.

I dropped my pencil. My notes started to turn into gibberish right in front of my very eyes. The projector screen became a mess of bright, painful colors and my teacher’s voice became distorted and indecipherable. I immediately started to internally panic, as the only thing I could hear at that point was the echoes of the tap violating my ear drums.

Little did I know that what would happen next would change my life forever.

Tap.

Everything went black. The tap echoed again in my ears, but this time multiplied by the magnitude of a thousand trains screeching as they come to a slow and grinding halt. I quickly recovered my vision, although I could not look directly into a light without feeling more pain; however, I could see the distorted blur of person in front of me raise his pencil. As if time slowed down itself to torture me in a merciless brutality, I agonizingly watched my peer starting to swing his pencil to his metallic water bottle. I wanted to scream, I wanted to die, but my eyes would not budge. For two excruciating seconds, I had to watch my traitorous peer tapping his pencil against his water bottle. For two excruciating seconds, I experienced more panic and anguish than I ever thought possible.

Tap.

All of my senses gave up. I was stuck in a trance of darkness, floating inside my own mind to attempt to hide from the horrendous tap that will erupt again. I was helpless…

As Grandview students, we must be more vigilant of those who are pencil tapping and call them out on their actions.

But I wouldn’t go out like that.

With determination I broke free from the void, shining light into the it and pushing back into reality. Once I entered reality, I shook myself off and in a steadfast manor tapped my peer on the shoulder.

“Ya what’s up man?”

“Can you stop tapping your pencil? It’s just a bit annoying… haha…”

“Ya alright man.”

“Awesome, thanks.”

What I experienced is plaguing thousands of students across Grandview and seems to be posed as one of the most pressing issues America’s youth are dealing with.

While it honestly may not seem like too big of an issue, students often find themselves missing important parts of lectures and bits of information due to the nuisance of pencil tapping, not to mention the extreme annoyance and frustration that occurs when one taps their pencil.

As Grandview students, we must be more vigilant of those who are pencil tapping and call them out on their actions. Being more aware of one’s actions and calling out pencil tappers within our community can free our school from this injustice.

Let’s keep Grandview from being tapped out.

 

4 comments

  1. Lain Iwakura 21 February, 2018 at 20:32 Reply

    Personally, I just learned to stop caring about the noise around me when people tap their pencils. The sad reality is that most of the kids who are tapping constantly in the first place just don’t care enough about how much it might be irritating others because it satisfies their need for movement better than something like just bouncing their leg can. It’s a limitation of any job that requires sitting down not of your own volition for extened periods of time, and why noiseless fidget objects are such a great idea.

    But anyway, in my experience, getting annoyed by pet peeves is more of a thing that you choose to do in order to maintain a sense of internal consistency: People like to have a firm grasp on themselves, and consistently getting annoyed at something that isn’t actually all that big of a deal and could easily be mentally filtered out is something that a lot of people latch on to as a part of their identity, as stupid as that sounds. For me, getting over tapping was as simple as just realizing this and deciding to stop holding a grudge against it because there isn’t really anything I can do about it.

  2. Brian (Pen) Cil 8 March, 2018 at 12:28 Reply

    I am part of Pencil Tappers Anonymous, and I find this article highly offensive to my addiction. We’re trying our best to stop it, I personally lost my wife to my addiction of pencil tapping. Had to sell my manor to get enough money to buy more pencils… I-I tapped too hard most of the time and broke them. I bought one million dollars worth of pencils.

    My wedding you ask? Pencil themed. Part of the reason why I lost my wife. She was the only one there who had a normal dress on — my family had shown up completely decked out in pencil themed clothing. Pencil tuxedos, pencil dresses, pencil shoes and socks. Her family, on the other hand, had not shown up at all, thanks to my whole family being addicted to this horrible phenomenon of pencil tapping.

    When the flower girl came skipping down our pencil themed carpet, she was, of course, throwing pencils instead of petals, which impaled several children nearby. The ring bearer was my younger nephew, named Penn Cill, who brought up the decorative pencil rings we had planned for the wedding. When the priest said we may kiss, everyone in the audience tapped their pencils in excitement, which caused my wife to have a stroke, much like you did in this article. She did not make it.

    You are lucky you survived, and I am upset that we affect so many people. Please be gentle on us, we are recovering.

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