Friday, March 9, 2012

Pens Size

No, that title is not a typo, I’m actually blogging about writing implements today. I chose that title on purpose, however — I’m trying to attract new readers, and I figure that’ll pull in at least a few curious women thinking it’s a typo!

Actually, I tend to carry a notebook with me wherever I go so I can write myself notes and sometimes work on something longhand, when there’s no time, room, or power outlet for my laptop. Several of these blogs were written out in that notebook while Handsome was at something like Wrestling practice, or a play-date, and then typed into the blog later. As one of the World’s Worst Typists I’ll take any advantage I can get when it comes right down to entering a blog.

When I started carrying this notebook, I looked at quite a few pens to go with it. I wanted something that felt good to write with, that wrote well ( I lack patience with pens that stutter across the page, the ink starting and stopping within individual words!) and that would fit snugly into the binding of the notebook — not stuffed in to the point where I’d have to pry it out, but not so loose as to clatter across the floor every time I picked the book up.

I searched and searched, and finally found the right pen for me. It’s a Caliber pen that’s half the length of a normal pen. It’s comfortable in my hand, writes with a beautiful, smooth line, is retractable and fits perfectly into the binder of my notebook. Jackpot! I’ll call it my Half-Pint.

But there’s a problem. My little Half-Pint is the ‘extra’ pen in the 5-pack of regular Caliber pens, kind of like ‘buy 5 pens get a half-of-one free!’ Now, I have nothing against those regular pens, I think they’re great. They’re just as comfy and write just as well as my little half-pint scribbler… but they don’t fit in the binding. Not at all. So I stuck them in the drawer and just went about my business with the half-pint. Until it ran out of ink, that is. Which it did fairly quickly. Not surprising, considering how much I was using it coupled with the fact that it only holds half the ink of those ‘regular’ pens.

So I bought another, along with its attendant 5 more pens.

I lost that one. So I got another. That one ran dry. So I got another. And another.

Now, this last time my little Half-Pink ran dry, I sat there and looked in my desk drawer. There were 20 pens lying in there, the unwanted brothers and sisters to the dying penlet I held in my hand, and here I was, already planning to buy 5 more just so I could get my dirty writing mitts on the littlest one in the pack. I felt guilty, like some sort of user, preying on the smallest, the stragglers, the ones too little to fend for themselves.

Instead, I went a little crazy, I’ll admit. I went to Staples, and I got a couple of small pens and some refills for other pens, and I tried to play Pen God. I tore the heart and soul out of the little pen that had served me so faithfully and tried to replace it with different pen parts, parts scavenged from the corpses of other pens. I stuffed the ill-fitting parts into my little pen, forced the little body to close, to accept the new parts rather than reject them. I held my cobbled-together pen in my shaking hand, and I put it to paper.

It wrote.

“It’s alive!” I cried to the Heavens and all who would listen, “It’s alive!”

I knew not what I wrought.

What looked like my old little Half-Pint, and at first felt like my old little Half-Pint, no longer retracts. There’s no internal room, the guts stuffed inside so tightly the nib protrudes to twice the length of the old one. It does not write well, skittering and stuttering across the page, the ink flowing or not, according to random chance. I gazed in horror at the little pen in my hand; stretched, deformed, functionally compromised. I gazed at it and wept.

It was a monster.

...okay... I guess I got a little carried away there... um... right....

So I guess I’m off to the store to buy another pack of pens, most of which will wind up rolling around in my desk drawer.

Pen anyone?

Talk to you later!

1 comment:

  1. Loved this! (And no, I really knew what you were writing about when I saw the title)

    I've got a lot of pens... have a couple boxes of "dead" ones because I couldn't throw them out.

    I like the Pilot G-2's because you can get refills for them. But they run out too fast too.

    Ah, I love finding new pens. I should have gone into selling pens for a living, I think!