Plastic three-ring binder with external binder rings
The Flex binder by Mead is a three-ring binder with plastic rings that lock together outside the spine. That offers two advantages.
1) the front cover can wrap entirely around to the back, eliminating the “jiggle” you get when you press on the paper as you write if you’ve folded a normal three-ring binder. 2) the spine doesn’t need to be wide enough to accommodate the binder rings. The Flex binder is flatter than a normal three-ring binder, making it easier to stuff into a backpack.

While he was going through school, a young relative of mine used whatever school supplies were lying around.  Whether he wrote with pencil or ball point, on college-ruled paper or on paper bags, it was all the same to him.  He dismissed me when I tried to interest him in the merits of gel pens or index cards.  He dismayed me by ignoring my subtle and not-so-subtle suggestions about the use of day planners .

Eventually he went off to college.  I was gratified when he called me one day from college.  “You know those Flex binders you bought me in high school?  Could you send me some more?”

He still didn’t care about his other school supplies, but he’d figured out that Flex binders are the best binders for students who carry their work around in backpacks.  Other three-ring binders have rigid spines, which makes them hard to stuff into rucksacks that are already loaded with books and gloves and dried-up ballpoint pens.

Flex binders, on the other hand, flex.  Because they have no rigid spines, they curve around those bulky textbooks and water bottles.  With a Flex binder, it’s a little easier to tote all those things a student needs.

I sent him new Flex binders with my love.  And I hope that one day he’ll come around to the pleasures of the right day planner, too.


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