History of Woody’s Chalkboard

I didn’t invent the chalkboard. I just revolutionized it.

Neanderthals likely were the first to use rock to write on walls.

See how far I’ve come from being a Neanderthal.

James Pillians, assistant headmaster at Royal High School in Edinburgh, Scotland, generally is credited with being the first to apply a form of a chalkboard in the classroom. He took discarded pieces of grey slate and utilized them, with chalk to teach geography. A math teacher at the West Point Academy later put up a full blackboard on his classroom wall to help him in instruction, and the chalkboard, or blackboard, became popular in schools throughout the world by the late 1800s.

A lot of schools don’t even have blackboards any more. They have been replaced by computers and iPads in the classroom.

But the blackboard lives on on ESPN’s ”Around The Horn’’.

Seven years ago, my ESPN associate, Jason Weindruch, and I were walking in Manhattan after doing ”Cold Pizza’’ and ”Around The Horn’’ one day, and I told the brilliant young man I needed something unusual in the background of my ATH set. He said: ”How about a blackboard with sayings on it. I think I can get one at Toys ‘R Us.’’

Blackboards ‘R Us.

Jason, who has been with me for 10 years, since the beginning of ”Around The Horn,’’ started writing witty-pithy-stupid sayings on the blackboard. Shortly after, a vice president of the network told us: ”Lose the blackboard.’’ A week later he called back and said: ”Get the blackboard back.’’

And the blackboard, with the mute button, have become the most popular human or inanimate objects on the daily show ever since.

Thousands upon thousands of people have asked me if I’ll ever gather all the blackboard sayings in one spot.

A guy recently approached me in a restaurant and showed me his iPhone screen saver: ”This is one of your blackboard sayings, and I pull it out ever time we have a company sales meeting.’’

It was: ”Don’t confuse me with facts.’’

This is the spot for blackboard sayings from over the years.

We have kept a record of all the blackboards and will dribble them out on a regular basis on Sports Paige. So, stay tuned. Enjoy. And choose the ones you like for screen savers and the wall in your cave. Evan a Neanderthal can do it.