I’ve always been in love with my crayons. I can remember fondly of being excited whenever my mother bought me a new box of Crayola crayons to use at school when I was little. I couldn’t wait to get to school, sit at my desk, and pull out that box of fresh new crayons, with all their unused tips glinting in light of the many halogen bulb fueled classroom fixtures, their colorful labels yet unblemished or torn from usage. To bring that open box close to my nose, and inhale that fresh and unused crayon scent. Pure childhood ecstasy! Not to mention how wonderful it felt to pull one of those brand new, completely unused crayons from it’s place in the box, and to bring it to paper for the first time! It was an almost indescribable feeling, to be honest.
I would exclaim to my mother on the morning before going to school “I get to use my new crayons today!!” and literally be unable to contain my excitement as I prepared for the school day. I would do so as quickly as possible so I could hurry up and get to my classroom for the soul purpose of getting being able to use my new crayons. The bigger the box one would get, the more popular one would be in class. You know if you had more colors than the other kids, you’d be the one they’d all either envy in a teeth gritting silence, or walk up to, asking to use a color they didn’t have. Either way, you’d be the talk of the classroom if you got the really big box, which, in my youth, was the 64 pack of crayons. It even had a built in sharpener, albeit one which was next to unusable, in the lower back side of the box. That was the big league of crayon boxes.
Unfortunately, my mother rarely, if ever bought me that huge box. She thought it was unnecessarily indulgent for what I needed, plus, it wouldn’t really fit in my pencil box as nicely, not if I wanted some actual pens and pencils in there, that is. The biggest set she would agree to buy for me was the more modest 48 pack. Still a nice set, and it left plenty of room in my box for pencils and pens, but it just wasn’t as attention getting as the 64 pack.
Then one day, Crayola rolled out their biggest yet package, the 96 pack of crayons, and that just blew my 10 year old mind. Of course, by then, my classes no longer required crayons as part of their supply list, so Mom stopped getting them for me. I settled for simply using the collection of my old crayons I had amassed over my childhood years and was placated for a while.
It wasn’t until my mid teens when I was out shopping with my mother, that I saw that overly huge set of 96 crayons, and remembering how popular a big box of crayons made a kid in grade school, I had to have it. I asked my mother if I could have it, and she said yes. Once again I could enjoy the pleasures of a brand new box of crayons. Of course, by then, I had matured to be more gentle on my crayons, and cherished the 96 set box as if it were my baby. I stored them on a shelf in my closet when not in use, and kept the box as neat and pristine as possible. I also kept the crayons all sorted and when I did use them, I colored as softy as possible to keep the tips as long as I could.
All of this gentleness and tender care came crashing to a halt when my younger brother, of three years, came home one day and pulled the very much rumpled and dented box I worked so hard to keep so nice from out of his book bag. My crayons weren’t as I had last left them, safely in my closet. The tips of many were broken off, and some were completely snapped in two, or three places!! I was irate. I demanded he replace them, but my mother just laughed and said “They’re just a box of crayons.” Not being able to argue my point, I hung my head in defeat, and flung myself into my room to mourn my broken crayons in peace.
I don’t recall my brother ever replacing those crayons, he might have at some point, so it’s no use to demand he buy me some now. After all, this happened over 15 years ago.
After yet another hiatus of having no access to crayons, and now being able to buy crayons for the first time for myself, I naturally went to the source, Crayola.com, and bought the biggest set money could buy, the Crayola Crayon Tower, with a whopping 150 different colors, with some in metallic and glittery shades. If the 96 set of crayons made me feel good, you can only imagine how elated I felt getting my hands on the 150 box set!! The clear container it came in was even cool as it telescoped upward with a twist to make a tall tower carousel type setup from which each crayon was highly visible and nestled next to the handle is sharpener (one that is actually worthwhile) in a cool clear turquoise-green color. I still have this set, and it’s right next to me on my shelf as I type this blog entry. Here’s a picture of it.
The coolest crayon set ever from Crayola!
Of course, Crayola later released an even bigger set, with 152 different colors in it called the “Ultimate Crayon Collection”. Naturally, I became somewhat enamored by this set as well, what with it’s promise of two more unique colors than the “Crayon Tower” I had. However, when I compared it to tower, I felt the tower had more going for it with the container itself. I just placated myself with a possible future purchase of the smaller, but still impressive, 120 crayon box so I could have those two elusive colors, and an additional 118 duplicate colors to keep me happy for a long time.
So, there ends my Crayola crayon journey. Oh, and by the way, my favorite Crayola crayon color was always “Periwinkle”, that purplish-blue crayon that seemed to stand out from the rest for me. I would always use it the least, to save it the longest. Now you know.