(the Bic edition of “Death of a Salesman,” perhaps?)
So, when asked by my mother-in-law what I wanted for my birthday, I said “a pen.” I had a specific pen in mind, and told them. A Lamy Vista Extra Fine Nib fountain pen.
I already own two fountain pens (and a couple of days before this, bought a Pilot Primux fountain pen from Target) (Which is a nice pen, but the ink flow isn’t great, so it’s not comfortable for lengthy writing sessions). I like both of the fountain pens I already own, but they do a very thick line of ink, and I just prefer thinner. for one thing, I can get more words on a page, and that makes me happy. For another thing, if the ink stays damp, I smear it horribly, being left-handed. (Mostly, this isn’t an issue. occasionally, it is.)
Today, the new fountain pen showed up. Completely clear, with a glorious fine nib and an ink cartridge with it. Hooray! A lovely lid and — this is nice — a thin rubber seal that the lid presses into, making it airtight. And a pocket clip on the pen which is a pretty hefty clip.
It writes gloriously, effortlessly, and produces a lovely thin line.
Pens are like tea, or like coffee. I’ve said this before. Someone might say “Yeah, I don’t like coffee,” and when you ask them about it, you realize that all they’ve ever tried is the cheapest rubbish from the lowest gas station, in slightly warmed water. Or, for tea, they’ve had a warm cup of what essentially tastes like motor oil. And from that, they’ve gone “Yeah, I dont’ like coffee/tea/beer,” whatever it is.
Pens are like that. I’ve known people who say “I hate writing by hand,” and then realized that they’ve only done it with the cheapest, most lousy of pens. No wonder!
A good pen, and some nice paper, makes it a joy and a delight. I’m reveling in it.
(Or I would be, if I weren’t cramming tons of anthropology into my head, for my final exams on Thursday).
None of it’s expensive, either. I don’t think expensive = good in pens, tea, or coffee (or beer, probably, how would I know?). The good fountain pen cost me twenty-five bucks. The notebooks, for four of these lovely things, cost me three or four bucks, I think.
Two good things. 1) This pen will work with all the ink cartridges I already have around the house, which makes me really happy. And 2) When I buy the ink converter for the pen (which is seven bucks), then the pen can be refilled endlessly just from bottles of ink. Which is a huge savings over cartridges.
Also showed up in the mail today,
Drood by Dan Simmons. One of the best books I’ve ever read. I read it from the library, and it was sort of painful to return it. So now I own a lovely brand new hardcover. I can’t wait to read it again.
Under the Dome by Stephen King. I’ve heard, so far, two people tell me it’s some of King’s best work, and I’ve heard a couple of people say it was a huge disappointment. I already have an on-again-off-again relationship with Stephen King books. So I’ll read this one sooner or later and see what happens. Duma Key was, I think, my favorite Stephen King book. But just before that, I found Lisey’s Story unreadable. So we’ll see which way this one goes.
Zach woke up last night feverish. Really feverish. 103 degrees feverish. This was followed, ten minutes later, by lots o’ vomit. THIS was followed by a long night with almost no sleep. So while I could talk about other stuff right now…I’m too groggy to think of any of it.
And sadly, I can’t get a lot of sleep tonight. My plans for studying for my exams was pretty badly compromised by a sick kid (I know, how insensitive, right?) (poor guy, he’s still doing pretty poorly). So it’s gonna be a long frantic week of hopefully writing something intelligent on the exam.
I want to talk TV shows. But later, friends, later.