disappearance of the object of the task. This is both satisfying as well as defeatist. The term strike can similarly be applied when one succeeds as well as when something is struck from a list. To strike is associated with both possibility as well as consequence. These pencils stand like soldiers, a potentially anonymous group, but each bares the unique traces of its user, teeth marks, grubby ﬁngers and almost obliterated names of those who used their pencil until it almost disappeared, until their pencils were hardly pencils anymore.