The Pencil Incident
The Pencil Incident, sometimes called "The Great Pencil Tragedy of 10:01", refers to the historical event that occurred on October 15, 2007. It is one of the most influential, most controversial, and most debated upon topics in world history.
Details of the event are violently debated amongst historians. The event was never captured on videotape, which leads to doubt and questioning over many of the specific details of this earth-shattering incident. But most scholars agree that an individual (whose specific identity has not been disclosed) was sitting at his desk, typing, at 10:01 in the afternoon (although some radical Islamic organisations claim that it actually took place at 10:03). He had a mouse pad to his left, and upon that mousepad the mouse of his computer was sitting. To the left of his mouse pad, a pencil was sitting, precariously close to the edge of his desk. Most history textbooks say that at the point when there were about 20 seconds to go before 10:02, the person reached for his mouse, and moved it, and the wire of the mouse hit the pencil, sending it toppling off the desk and onto the floor.
When the pencil landed on the floor, it killed over 100,000 small bacteria and other innocent microbes who were crushed under the weight of the pencil as it crashed down, smushing them and killing them all. Over 500 more were wounded. Also, the pencil made a loud clicking noise as it hit the floor that disturbed the sleep of the hamster in the other room.
Criticism of the individual at the keyboard
In the days and weeks immediately following the horrific pencil incident, the gentleman who had been typing was bashed by many groups for dealing with the crisis poorly. In one scathing op ed piece in Time magazine, he was slammed as sloppy and inattentive: "If only he had had the foresight to see that pencil, and had moved it away from the desk, or maybe, if only he had been a bit slower in moving the mouse so the wire wouldn't swing out the way it did, this might never have happened. But thanks to his CARELESSNESS, it did happen, and now the world will never be the same again." Also, his response to the incident has been slammed as tremendously irresponsible. For reasons that historians debate about heavily to this day, he waited a full two minutes, that's right, two minutes, that is, until 10:04, to stoop down and pick the pencil up off the floor and place it back on the desk, this time, on the left side of his computer, far away from the mouse. "His waiting three minutes to pick up that pencil was a gratuitous display of negligence!" said an angry historian during a discussion of the incident, "I just don't see how anyone, anyone, could be that reckless, that irresponsible about responding to a disaster of this magnitude. What an embarrassment."
Debate of specifics
There are many different sects of debate over what exactly happened on that faithful night, the night of October 15, 2007, when the pencil fell off the desk and clattered on the floor. Some countries have outright banned discussion of the topic, as it is so controversial. Some radical groups include one group who claims that it was a pen, rather than a pencil, that was knocked to the floor, but there is no evidence supporting this radical viewpoint. When asked about this conspiracy theory, a prominent historian scoffed: "Oh, rubbish! That's like claiming that the guy who knocked the pencil off his desk was typing at a typewriter instead of a computer! What'll they claim next, that it was a FEATHER QUILL that he knocked off his desk? It's just preposterous. There are certain facts of that night that cannot be denied: that it was definitely 10:01, that the guy who knocked the pencil off his desk waited four minutes before picking it up, and that shortly after picking it up, he scratched an itch on his forearm (in what most historical textbooks call "The Great Itch of 10:14")." There are, however, some issues that remain in heated debate, such as how far away from the desk the pencil landed, how many old, useless floppy disks were sitting on a shelf next to the computer at the time of the incident, and how long "The Great Itch" lasted. Historic opinion is divided on which way the pencil faced when it landed; roughly half of historians claim that the pencil faced the wall upon landing, whereas the other half that the pencil faced into the room, towards the bed. This point is considered crucial in understanding the incident, but neither side has yet won over the other.
Extreme conspiracy theories
Some theories transcend mere pointless bickering between mouldy historians; some question the very central aspects of the event itself. Some theories of what happened on that faithful evening are so radical that they have been labelled as pseudo sciences. Outlining each and every one of them would take years, but a select few will be named here.
The angry bacteria theory
One theory states that it wasn't the person at all who knocked the pencil off his desk. This theory claims that an insane, fanatical microbe decided to commit an unimaginable act, and tip the pencil off the desk onto a bunch of other bacteria, as an act of mass murder. Believers (who can be found at JERRYDIDTHEPENCILINCIDENT.ORG) claim that Jerry spent about 8 weeks climbing the desk, which culminated in him reaching the top, then waiting for the exact moment when the guy reached for his mouse to tip the pencil off the desk, so it would look like the guy did it. However, most believers in this theory are anti-bacterialists, that is, they are racist against all forms of micro organism, and therefore their arguments are usually dismissed as anti bacterialist propaganda.
The suicidal pencil theory
Still others claim that the act was an act of fury by the pencil itself, who felt under appreciated, as it was no longer being used by the person because its eraser had worn out. Believers think that the pencil saw the guy reaching his hand towards it, and briefly thought that it would finally be used again. But then, the guy grabbed the mouse, and the pencil was filled with disappointment and bitterness, and hurled itself off the desk. This theory is usually scoffed at by professional historians, however, because in all other incidents of pencil suicide in the past, the pencils left notes.
The theory so radical it is almost unthinkable to even devote a paragraph to it
The most radical of all the conspiracy theorists are those who claim that the entire incident was staged, that the guy simply put his pencil on the desk, then knocked it off. When asked what his motives could possibly have been, theorists claim, "He did it so he could write an article about it!!! It's a conspiracy, I say!!!" However, these claims are ridiculous, and I refuse to write any more about them.