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1990s Odd News: “Too Cool to do Drugs” Pencils

1990s Odd News: “Too Cool to do Drugs” Pencils

Pencils produced in the 1990s with the anti-drug slogan “Too Cool to Do Drugs” were recalled because, when sharpened, they read “Do Drugs.”

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Anti-Drug Pencils

The story dates back the the late 1990s, when a pencil with an anti-drug slogan was produced which read “Too Cool to Do Drugs.” It wasn’t long before a 4th grade student pointed out that his sharpened pencil read “Cool to Do Drugs” and then “Do Drugs.”

The company which produced the pencils, Bureau for At-Risk Youth out of Plainview, NY, decided to recall them.

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A company spokeswoman told The Plattsburgh Press-Republican, “We’re actually a little embarrassed that we didn’t notice that sooner.”

The company produced a new set of pencils with the slogan written in the opposite direction. This means as the pencil was sharpened, it would read “Too Cool.”

When the 10-year old who discovered the problem was asked why he thought the company didn’t catch the mistake, he responded, “I guess they didn’t sharpen their pencils.

Bottom Line

An anti-drug pencil was produced in the 1990s which read “Too Cool to Do Drugs.” It was soon discovered that sharpening the pencils led to something of a pro-drug slogan. The pencils were recalled and the slogan was printed on new pencils in the opposite direction.

Updated July 15, 2015
Originally published April 2014

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