September 24th, 2006
I know this guy.
When he was a kid in elementary school, some other kid stabbed his hand with a number two pencil. For years, despite his family’s urgings, he never went the extra mile to extract the chunk of pencil lead in his hand. He’d read articles about lead poisoning, he’d been asked if he wanted to live past 30, and he even received pamphlets in the mail trying to convince him that before long…the lead poison would end his life.
Surprise! He’s still alive today!
Just like all of us have been lied to that there are actually air bags in our cars, we’re being lied to again by the general poison-warning government about lead being poisonous. Sure, don’t go and eat a box of number two pencils — that might hurt you. But periodic run-ins with the stuff, or having a piece of a pencil lodged in your throat for a few years…
You’re going to be okay.
I asked this guy I know if he’d had any weird symptoms over all these years with the lead pencil stuck in his hand and do you know what he told me? Despite some periodic dizziness (which he attributes to not learning how to breathe as fully and deeply as we probably should be breathing) and light-headedness…he’s got no issues. And ironically, as that lead slowly and methodically leaks into his blood stream — he’s felt stronger, smarter, more agile and more attractive to the opposite sex.
Personally, I’ve had a few of my own lead situations that involve the incident of ’83 when I sat on a sharpened pencil that had been stuck inbetween the wicker folds of a kitchen chair, thus piercing my left thigh/buttock and causing me to yell out in pain. There was the incident of ’91 when a friend who was playing Scrabble with me and was upset at my usage of all seven (7) letters and a 50 point bonus…he stabbed me accidentally in the shoulder with a sharp number two pencil. And of course, last week (and the reason for this post) I ended up playing around with one of those plastic pencils where you load it up with those skinny lead rods — and accidentally tasted part of one of the lead rods.
And I’m still here.
No sickness. No dizziness. No light-headed lack of equilibrium. In fact, with the variety of exposures I’ve had to lead, you’d think I’d be dead by now if you listened to the over-cautious lead-fearing U.S. Government. In fact, all the friends I have who have lead stuck in their arms, legs and hands — they’re all living productive, happy lives.
And what about you?
I’m not telling you to go out and eat lead based paint. I’m not telling you to ingest twelve pencils. I’m just telling you that if you happen to accidentally get lead lodged under your skin or you sit completely hard on an upright pencil or you happen to lick a dirty pencil while drunk (thinking it’s a lollipop) — you’ll be okay. We all will.
Because lead poisoning, in the casual sense — is a total fallacy.