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21 pen questions

I like answering questions. It scratches the same itch as those stone-age social media surveys.

21 pen questions

1. What is the pen they’ll have to pry out of your cold dead hands?

My Waterman Laureat. It's not the most expensive or flashy pen, but it was passed on to me from my mom, so it has some history and a lot of sentimental value, but it also just writes well. Also it has the glorious late 80s/early 90s design sensibility that I love.

2. What’s your guilty pleasure pen?

I'm too cool to feel guilty about any of my pens. Next.

3. What’s the pen you wish existed?

I'm still waiting for a pen with slightly translucent dark olive green resin and gold hardware. It would look so good. Like the Sailor 1911 Golden Olive, but a little darker and more opaque. And no glitter. (I do love glitter, but not for this!)

Soooo basically I'm just thinking of a Platinum 3776 in olive. Your move, Platinum!

4. What pen would you give to a new enthusiast?

I don't own a LAMY Safari myself (I am extremely cynical and bitter about missing the savannah green release from 2021), but I'd give it to someone as a gift. It looks nice, it's inexpensive enough that someone wouldn't be afraid of using it, and the interchangeable nibs are a nice perk.

5. What pen do you want to get along with but it just never clicked?

I want to like the Kaweco Sport, but I can't get over how cheap the plastic body feels, and I don't care for the design much. The AL version takes care of my issues with the material, but I can't spend so much money on a pen whose design I can... maybe tolerate. It looks goofy! I'm sorry!

6. What pen do you only keep only because its pretty?

The Sailor Compass 1911 is a real looker, but I really don't like how it writes (even after fixing a nib manufacturing flaw that choked off ink flow). It's too fine and dry. I wouldn't buy it again.

REVISION MAY 26 2024: Nevermind! It actually works great for drawing. I would like to apologize to this pen, although I'm still mad at Sailor for not making any broader nibs for it.

7. What pen (or stationery product) did you buy because everyone else did?

If I don't legitimately want a thing, I'm not buying it. Next!

8. What pen (or stationery product) is over your head or just baffles you?

Tomoe River paper. I get it, it makes ink look cute, but you can't use both sides of it! And it wrinkles if you breathe on it wrong. I have no clue how people put up with it.

9. What pen (or stationery product) surprised you?

I was surprised at how much I like stub nibs. I didn't think they'd work with my writing style since I write in 75% cursive. They surprised me again when I learned I get architect-style writing out of them instead of... well, what stub nib writing is supposed to look like. So I guess I've accidentally saved myself from spending money on an architect grind.

10. What pen doesn’t really work for you but you keep it because it’s a collectible?

I don't buy anything to have "as a collectible." I need to use that shit. Next!

11. What is your favorite sparkly pen (or ink)?

My favorite sparkly pen/ink combo isn't a fountain pen - it's the Sakura Gelly Roll. Those pens have yet to disappoint me. I have all of them. The glitter and metallic ones are so sparkly and amazing.

12. Which nib do you love – but hate the pen?

I haven't run into a pen where I like the nib and not the pen! I prioritize nib quality, but not to the extent that I'd buy a pen that I hate the rest of.

13. What pen (or stationery product) gives you the willies?

The Kaweco Sport again. This is 100% psychological, but it feels so uncomfortably light to hold. I hate it.

14. What’s your favorite pen for long form writing?

I don't do long form writing, unless writing notes and answer keys counts... In that case, I like the medium Platinum steel nib. It puts out so much ink, so it's really comfortable to write with when I'm trying to cram an entire unit of notes into one afternoon. But it also doesn't put out so much ink that I run out after a day or so of regular writing.

15. What pen (or stationery product) do you love in theory but not in practice?

The Sailor Pro Gear pens are nice to look at (as all Sailor pens are), but the nibs are just... fine. They're fine. I couldn't stomach spending that kind of money on a nib that's just fine.

16. What pen (or stationery product) would you never let someone else use?

I wouldn't say I'd NEVER let anyone use one of my pens, but I'd never let a stranger use anything I have unless they're familiar with fountain pens and I know they're not going to do anything stupid.

17. What pen (or stationery product) would you never use for yourself?

I'd never use a retractable fountain pen. I think they're cool, but I've never been in a situation where I'm like "Wow, I sure wish I didn't have to spend 2 seconds unscrewing the cap of this pen!"

18. What pen (or stationery product) could you NOT bring yourself to buy?

I don't think I could ever buy a Montblanc pen. I've tried the Meisterstuck, it writes amazingly, but the price scares the fuck out of me. I don't think I could bring myself to use it (or any other Montblanc) even if I found the money and willpower to buy it.

19. What’s your favorite vintage pen?

My experience with vintage pens is woefully limited, but I have contemplated collecting Waterman Laureats several times because they're just so good. They look great. They write great. I love those guys.

20. What is your favorite EDC/pocket pen?

The Platinum Plaisir is my favorite EDC pen because it's durable and I love how it writes, but it's inexpensive enough that I wouldn't feel emotionally ruined if anything happened to it. (I'd still be upset, but I'd rather lose a sub-$20 easily replaceable pen than something more expensive or hard to get.)

21. What’s the pen (or stationery product) that got away?

I try not to think about FOMO. If I'm considering something and it disappears before I buy it, I decide it wasn't meant to be. I will accept that we were just two ships passing in the night.

(But yeah I'm still bitter about the whole 2021 Lamy Safari thing still.)


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