fountain pens

To Fill Pens–And Bellies

It is now midday-ish, and the humans are starting to make hungry noises.  Since our party has encountered a group of friends, there are now seven humans to organize as to what to dine upon and where to do it.  The human female has been enthusiasing prolifically about an eatery she found online.  It has a huge menu!   It has good prices!  It has great reviews!  It is mere blocks from the location of the pen show!  It is only open until 2:00, so we had better get into our respective vehicles and skedaddle!

It is most emphatically not open today!   Ehehehehe!  I knew that and you didn’t!  Try again, mortals!  You will have to feast upon something else.  And since you called the blue-haird goddaughter to meet up with you, you will have to re-direct her to whatever venue you choose.

(a short while later)  So here we all are in a tiny diner that appears to specialize in bagels and other sandwiches.  I think by walking in our group has doubled their daily clientele.  Do you see something you would like to try, Sigyn?

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While we wait for the food to arrive, everyone is pulling out their pen show purchases and comparing notes.

The human male and female seem to have been focusing on ink.  These are the female’s choices.

inkhaul

The box with the illuminated manuscript design of a whale holds what is purported to be an indelible medium blue ink.  Sensible choice, although there must already be fifty shades of blue in the house.  The other bottle holds a very pale, girly shade of watery blue.  The human male keeps asking the female if she’s sure she’s going to like it, because anything written with it is certainly going to be difficult to read.  She is stalwartly defending her choice.  No matter to me–I don’t have to use it.

The human male has bought green (upon which I am standing) and a shade of deep brownish-red called “Red Beans and Rice.”  Sigyn is intrigued by the fancy wax seal.

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The human male is sniggering as he places the next bottle before me.

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“White Lightning”?  Oh, I see.  You are throwing Thor up to me again.  Ha ha ha.  Very clever, mortal.  I note that this liquid is supposed to make stubborn inks flow more freely.  Very well.  You can be sure I’m going to “freely” a pen all over your pocket in the near future.  Then we’ll see who’s laughing.

Some of the pen vendors hand out little trinkets in their booths.  Today it seems to be stickers.  I’ve got one that looks like a splat of the human female’s pale blue ink, which is sort of lame.  Sigyn, however,  has a fancy hologram one.

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*I* want a fancy hologram one!  Pout.

Wait! Why is everyone putting away the ink—?  Oh.  I see. The food is coming out.  The males have mostly ordered meaty wrap-like objects.  Sigyn and the human female appear to have ordered the most veggie thing on the menu.   Vegetable cream cheese with lettuce, spinach, cucumber, tomato, sprouts, and avocado on a sesame bagel.

lunch-bagel

To judge by the rapturous noises they’re making, it’s quite tasty indeed, but I’m feeling peevish as well as peckish, so the human female can expect to have to fight every second to keep all the delicious ingredients from sliding right out of the bagel onto her shirt.

Now, where’s my gyro?

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I Think I Still Prefer a Sword (And I Could Use One About Now)

I…I’m not quite sure how it happened, but I find myself wedged into the automobile with Sigyn, the humans and one of their more voluble friends. We are, apparently, en route to the annual fountain pen show in the big city to the north. This means I can look forward to three and a half hours of discussion in transit of the merits and/or failings of different brands of pens, paper, inks, and whatnottery.  As if I cared.

Still, Sigyn likes looking at all the pretty colors of inks, and I will admit that I do like to keep abreast of the newest in pens and inks, if only so I can have a better chance of putting together a combination that is going to get the human female smeary to the elbows and swearing like Niffelheim fishwife.  So I’m not discontent to be going, just ready to be out of this vehicle.

Ah!  And here we are, in the busy, bustling show room.  I can scarce credit that there are so many persons infected with Pen Pox in the state.  Still, when you consider that the human male has probably infected a dozen victims himself, I suppose it stands to reason.

Sigyn is captivated by a tray of antique pens.

snorkel

Is it the muted colors of celluloid which beckon, my love?  Or are you merely enamored of the word “snorkel.”

Here is a matching pen and pencil set.  I think I know why Sigyn likes this one.

sheaffer

Fandrals Mustache!  Look at the prices!  The pen sold for $18.50 back in its prime.  It is now priced at $360.00, a nearly twenty-fold increase.  Clearly, I need to invent a time machine so I can travel back, buy up a bunch of cheap pens, bring them forward, and make a bundle selling them to suckers discerning customers.

Great Frigga’s Corset! What is he doing here?

thorstatue1

Can I go nowhere without running into my oafish brother?!  And what is he doing at a pen show? The idiot can barely write his own name with one of those monstrously fat pencils they let infants use.

Augh!  He is accompanied by another fearsome warrior, one who looks to be from the same realm as Hogun.

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Stand down, you fools!  I mean you no harm, but if it’s a fight you seek, I am only too willing to oblige!

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She Has Finally Succumbed, Part II: The Intermission (A.K.A. LUNCH)

All of this stylophilic geekery  (not to mention the early start and the 3+-hour drive) have has given the humans quite an appetite.  It must be lunch time!  Luckily, the hotel has its own restaurant, with quite a diverse menu.  Let’s eat there.

(thirty minutes later)  I am becoming most definitely annoyed.  There are four humans plus us, plus another pen nerd who has wandered over to chat about–gasp! pens!, as well as a mountain of bags, a purse, etc., but still the waitress has yet to come and take our order!  Apparently we are invisible, and no, I didn’t do it.  I’m hungry too.

Oh, charming!  This area of the restaurant is apparently the “bar”, and there is a very limited menu available, specifically excluding the items some of us wished to purchase!  Outrage!  Well, I suppose we’ll have to choose from what’s available.

While we wait for the food, Sigyn is hugging this plant.

lunchplant

Give it a squeeze from me.  I’ll just keep an eye out for our order.

(later)  Now the males’ meals have come.  The human female has been handed a chicken club sandwich, which she did not order.  Back that sandwich goes!–and mind you get it right this time!

The human female is sharing her quesadilla with us.  She can have ALL the jalapenos and pico de gallo–I’m claiming the biggest piece of dilla with the most chicken and quesa.

quesadilla

Careful, Sigyn!  I do not think that sour cream is good for the complexion.

The human male’s sandwich came with a weapon.

sandwichskewer

Can I use it to poke the tortoise-paced waitstaff?

(later)  Well, that was all very tasty.  It’s time to head back into the—

Norns’ nighties!

fry-basket

Sigh. Some people just don’t understand about cute mini French-fry-containers.

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She Has Finally Succumbed, Part I: The Show

Longtime minions will recall that the human female has a love-hate relationship with fountain pens stretching back many years and recounted in many posts.  Over the years, she has found a few she can write with without besmirching herself to the elbows, and she’s always been fascinated with all the fancy colored inks.  Recently, she has given up and given in to the fountain pen obsession that grips the other member of the household, and she has wangled the day off to accompany the human male and two Pen Friends to the big Pen Show in the Big City to the North.

Sigyn and I have tagged along.  Sigyn, because she likes colors and people; I, because I am always looking for mischief opportunities, and a room full of expensive merchandise and stainy liquids seems like fertile soil.

I’ve scored before we’ve even arrived!  I just distracted the human male while he was driving, so he has missed his exit and has had to turn around.  The slight delay means he will miss his chance to get his name on the list to have one of his pens adjusted by a Master.  Ehehehehe!  This is fun already!

The show is being held in two big, adjoining rooms in a fairly swanky hotel.  It’s still early in the two-day event, but the crowd is sizeable and growing.

crowd

You can practically smell the nerdiness.

There is a very bizarre desk set near the booth of the Master doing the pen-altering.

monkeydeskset

Sigyn, stop!  Do not do what the sign says!  You don’t know where those creatures have been.

This vendor is selling colorful pen pouches.

pencases

Odin’s eyepatch!  Can I go nowhere without running into my brother or his horrible friends?!

While many of the vendors are showcasing the most recent, must-have merchandise, there are quite a few purveyors of vintage or antique writing implements.

vintage

Sigyn is drawn to the ones that look as if they might have been bright red once.

vintage-green-parkers

While I have just discovered that green seems to have been a popular color.  There are dozens and dozens that look just like this, all over the show.  The price is ridiculous on this batch, though, so I will keep looking.

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A Rather Piratical Gift

Sigyn and I have been distracted by candy and costumes, and we are just now getting a chance to examine the gift that the Nature Nerds gave to the human female the other day.  I wonder what it can be?  I’m hoping it is a box of twigs and rocks, because she doesn’t deserve much better…

Ah.  It is a cunning little leather-bound journal.

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Arrrr! It looks as if it should belong to a pirate.  There’s a compass on the cover, the end of the tie is a ship’s wheel, and the spine is decorated with an anchor. What ho, me hearties!

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Fisi is intrigued by the rich smell of leather.

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No, Fisi! Do not chew on the strap! Bad hyena! Bad! No biscuit!

journal1

Ugh. Now that we’ve hauled the crazed carnivore off, we can examine the inside.  It has an odd tan paper.

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Let us try the human female’s cheap little fountain pen with the obnoxious ink.  Believe me, this tan paper tones it down prodigiously.

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Oh, no!  A blot! Ack!  And the damned hyena’s back!

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What a mess.  This why we can’t have nice things.

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Same Madness, Different City

I like my new green fountain pen well enough and would happily call a halt to the search for whatever ill-defined ne plus ultra of pendom the humans are seeking, but No!  There must be MORE PENS!  MORE INK!  Somewhere there awaits an ink or a nib they have not tried and there is no rest for anyone until totality is reached.

Thus Sigyn and I find ourselves whisked away (well, as whisk-y as the traffic will allow, which isn’t very) to the Pen Emporium in the Big City to the South.  *Yawn.*  Old news, mortals.

The human female is taking the opportunity to try out the Namiki Falcon Fine Soft nib she thinks might work well with her handwriting.

falcon

Look at that hieroglyphic mess!  Flamingos?  Really?  Turns out that while it feels quite nice to write with, it really doesn’t flex as much as she hoped, and it doesn’t miraculously give her perfect penmanship.  I could have predicted that.

The next nib is a clever little one that is adjustable from stiff to soft.  Let us see what that produces.

adjustable

Blots, mostly.  Oh, well. It was worth a try, I suppose.  And while we are examining the results, what color would you say that ink is, hmm?  It is called Noodler’s Texas Blue Steel (I am not making this up!) The female maintains it is a dark teal.  The male says it is a steel blue with no green at all.  Greenish!  Blue!  GreenishNo green!  Ehehehehehe!  This is marvelous–I think they may actually come to blows!

Rats! The humans are moving on to testing every other ink they can find.

inktesting

Great Frigga’s corset!  What possible use could one have for that screaming yellow?  The Rome Burning is an intriguing shade, and I quite like the Antietam (looks like dried blood), but where are all the good greens?

While the male continues to try every. single. tester. bottle. ever, the female has wandered over to look at the pre-filled sissy gel pens.  Given her inability to write with a fountain pen without besmearing herself and her surroundings utterly…

hand

…this is probably wise.  (The above was AFTER washing.) You can see some of the ones she’s tested toward the bottom of the photo above.  After a LOT of dithering, she has picked out two greens, a teal, and a purple.  (It is purple, woman.  No amount of you calling it “Antique Violet” will keep it from being a purple pen.)

Sigyn is using the gel pens to draw a little violet or something.

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Not bad for using her non-dominant hand, though you can see her coloring wobbled a little.  Sigyn, may I try the dark green one?

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Oh, that will do quite well, when my fountain pen isn’t handy.  I shall mark where the human female puts it and purloin it at the earliest opportunity.

The male has just examined (at the female’s behest) a bottle of something called King Philip’s Requiem.  King Philip’s Revenge would be a more apt name!  Ehehehe!  It is a most violent shade of magenta-fuchsia, and the over-filled bottle has dribbled ink everywhere, much in the manner of the dreaded pink stain in that famous Midgardian children’s book about the cake-eating feline.  I do not know what heinous crime the ghost of King Philip is avenging, but his retribution is indeed terrible to behold.  While everyone else cleans up, Sigyn and I will enjoy this pastel repast which the proprietor has set out for valued customers such as ourselves.

cake

Ehehehe!  Oh, no!  Ehehehehehe!  The human male has actually purchased the magenta ink!  It was the last of its kind, a tester bottle, and the proprietor opened it to see how much remained, so as to set a price upon it.  I distracted him and he did not secure the lid properly afterwards. The check-out clerk, the clerk’s computer mouse, and the check-out counter have now all been liberally anointed, and the Revenge continues to spread. Sometimes these mortals make it just too easy.

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Getting Sucked Into Another Hobby, Part V: Mine!

I liked the Sherwood green ink well enough, but just like the human female, I haven’t found “my” pen yet.  However, the human male dredged up another one, one he rather likes.  Something called a Regal Edward.  “Regal” is good.

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Ooooh.  I like that green!  What sort of nib does it have?  Pretty!  Looks like a medium…  (You have no idea how geeky knowing that makes me feel!)

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And how does it write?  I shall inscribe my name and a simple test message.

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Mine now.

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