David Rees is getting bored sharpening pencils at $35 apiece


Can’t he hire someone to do it for him?


Is this from the Onion?


(hashtag) Firstworldproblem


What is this I don’t even…

Conceptual artists beware! ALWAYS have an exit strategy.


(Hash tag) whoooosh!

Less sarcastic version: I’m pretty sure he is amazed that anyone has taken him up on his artistic indictment of a first world problem, and is trying to parlay that amazement into yet another artistic indictment of our culture. He’s pretty good at that.

tl;dr: His new sharpening technique is stoppable.


2000 pencils @ $35 each, plus the royalties from his book and any interviews etc… he’s been doing pretty well out of this pencil sharpening business, hasn’t he?

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They’ve not all been at $35. I saw him at a bookstore appearance in Texas a while ago and got a hand-sharpened pencil for $10.

This seems like a good spot for an economist to step in and explain some real basic ideas.

He needs to raise his price.


or just cash out of the business – sell it as going concern?

Does he use a sharpener? I would hand carve your pencil point for $50. Quite beautiful, I have been told.

Send it on over with a check.

Oh, if only my pencil weren’t too dull to write a check …


David Rees might still sharpen it for you if you’re quick…

I work with a guy who does consulting. He was contemplating firing some of his clients. I told him to double or triple his rates. His worry was they would pay it.


I prefer a #2.5 pencil. Would that cost me $43.75?

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That’s the problem with this Internets thing. No one takes thing serious anymore. Someone’s always gotta be the smartass.

I wouldn’t say that; AFAICT the #firstworldproblem that subversivemomma refers to is the poor diddumses who can presumably no longer find someone to take the piss out of them by charging $35 for a pencil-sharpening.

If I was in Rees’ shoes and was tired of this lark, I’d have to boil the frog on my way out, I reckon: raise the price incrementally to see how insane a price the market would bear.

BTW, why the hell are people typing (hash tag) instead of #?

I’ve got his book, and not only is it a hoot (for those of you unfamiliar with him, Rees is the genius behind Get Your War On and other things), but I’ve actually gotten one of the (less expensive) hand sharpeners that he recommends in the book for use when I’m RPGing. The book is a very dry, witty piss-take on the whole “artisanal” industry, and I probably would have sent in a pencil for sharpening–just for the personal contact–if I had that kind of disposable income.