Just by reading this, you are silently and secretly admitting to yourself something that you probably would not share out loud. But don’t be ashamed. You’re safe here. There are more of us and we welcome you with open… well… pages. Yes, we are the paper nerds! We write on it, we draw on it, we print on it, we make art with it and we want to know everything about it. We like it so much; we don’t just write ON it, we write ABOUT it.
Here are my 5 favorite tid-bits about paper:
- “Over the centuries, paper has been made from a wide variety of materials – wood pulp, rice, water plants, cotton and even old clothes! But no matter what you use to make paper – you need “fiber.” Today’s paper fiber comes mainly from two sources: pulpwood logs and recycled paper products. In fact, much of the paper we use every day is a blend of new and recycled fiber.” (http://www.idahoforests.org/paprmake.htm)
- It’s remarkable how a normal piece of paper, worth almost nothing on it’s own, can, with just a few scribbles from the right pen connected to the right hand, be turned into something worth millions. This is exactly what happened when a piece of paper with William Shakespeare’s signature on it was once sold for $5 million. One of the most expensive pieces of paper ever! (http://history-facts.top5.com/the-top-5-most-valuable-pieces-of-paper/?page=2)
- There are different ways to turn woodchips into pulp for the production of paper. It can either be done mechanically or chemically. Mechanical pulping is customarily used in the production of weaker paper like for example those used for newspapers. Chemical pulping, also known as “kraft” is used in the process of making all the other, stronger types of paper. (http://wonderopolis.org/wonder/how-do-you-make-paper-from-a-tree/)
- Recycling one ton of paper saves the lives of approximately 17 trees. (http://paperproject.org/paperfacts.html)
- Around the year 105 A.D, a Chinese man named Ts’ai Lun experimented with tree bark, hemp, rags and fishnets as material to be used in the production of paper. He received high praise from the Emperor for his abilities. It took many years for “wood” paper to become global and mainstream, but this was the start of modern paper.(http://www.silk-road.com/artl/papermaking.shtml)
There are off course many… many more interesting facts about paper, but I only had time to write about these. I have to go do something else now.