Meet the pens

An old cherub proverb reads: “A cherub knows well and early the searing edit of their instructor’s pen.” The class of 2016 can testify.

Within days of the start of the program, or maybe hours, once-confident cherubs were shoved off their high horses when their articles were delivered back, awash in a rainbow of edits with colors and critiques cherubs grew to know well.

Some encouraging and others straight up caustic, these edits were thanks to a team of pens who worked overtime as the 10 instructors’ mouthpieces. Let’s meet some popular players:

Charles Whitaker

Sir Penninigton, Duke of Sugar-Coatia
Hover over image

Name of pen: Sir Pennington, Duke of Sugar-Coatia

Instructor: Charles Whitaker

Make: Pentel RSVP, medium-fine point

Color: a regal magenta, akin to the hue of Charles’s favorite Oxfords

About: Sir Pennington’s taste for word choice is finer than his point type. Think twice before you say your subject “jeered” — Is it more accurate that they “tottered”? He agrees. Good subject. The Sir only speaks in the royal We and his subjects are grateful. Rather than “You missed the mark,” Sir Pennington graciously offers that “We missed the mark,” and everyone likes failing better when someone else can take half the blame. He balks at cliches (how terribly plebeian) and always orders for more description (rule one states that no shoe should be called a brogue if it is in fact an Oxford, Wingtip or Derby — and the Sir doesn’t kid around with shoes). Above all, Sir Pennington favors faultless style of both the AP and wearable variety.

Best quotes:

“Well, this is certainly an interesting approach to this story.”

“Hmm….”

“No, we’re not doing this.”

“Sizely? :-/ Now that’s a new word!”

John Kupetz

The Green Machine
Hover over image

Name of pen: The Green Machine

Instructor: John Kupetz

Make: “Papermate Write Bros. medium point is the preferred instrument. They can be cheap via Amazon in boxes of a dozen. I think some of the money goes to the Washington Post.” — text interview with philanthropist and humanitarian John Kupetz himself

Color: You guessed it.

About: Cherubs be warnedd$d -- The Green Machine takes no prisonerscjdm and spares no89% liveszj. He will cut you dodwnn and laugh in the face of youhrwjf tears. Never expect an article to be anything less$5 than drenchedndd in abrasive green commentary, and never expect to be abllle*# to read anythinfsgkh; the sign of true Cherubbn genius is the ability to make senseses5s of about 50% of the Machine’s musings. The all-time record wassxb a 67% decipherability, set by a Cherub in 45 B.C. and not brokenb%@ sincssse. The class of 2016 wishes future victimzzv of the Green Machine the bestt7 of luck -- their egos will neednjk ittt.

(Translation: Cherubs be warned — The Green Machine takes no prisoners and spares no lives. He will cut you down and laugh in the face of your tears. Never expect an article to be anything less than drenched in abrasive green commentary, and never expect to be able to read anything easily; the sign of true Cherub genius is the ability to make sense of about 50 percent of the Machine’s musings. The all-time record was a 67 percent decipherability, set by a cherub in 45 B.C. and not broken since. The class of 2016 wishes future victims of the Green Machine the best of luck. Their egos will need it.)

Best quotes:

“SEZ wHo?”

“Use your noggin!” (approx. 45 reps)

“smb-K4S5 Ys tslylo.” (Translation: Good job.)

Cynthia Wang

The Cyntrio
Hover over image

Name of pen: The Cyntrio

Instructor: Cynthia Wang

Make/Color:

  • Black fine point Sharpie pen for line editing

  • Blue fine point Sharpie pen for comments

  • Red fine point Sharpie pen for errors

About: The Cyntrio dates back to life’s beginning. The Cyntrio possesses a strange and mysterious power (scientists believe this power is in fact distilled Australian reality TV) and wields this power to conquer the darker forces of Oxford commas and incorrect “theres.” The Cyntrio sees all and knows all. The Cyntrio always marks its edited territory with a ":D" (legend says that this mark signifies your reservation of Cynthia’s business card — network well). The Cyntrio sandwiches biting criticism within flowering compliments because it knows what you need. The Cyntrio splits run-on sentences in half with its bare hands. The Cyntrio is three moving parts. The Cyntrio is one.

Best quotes:

“I am confused.”

“Watch out for brand names. It’s just free advertising.”

“:D”