#postaday (well, not exactly).
What do you collect? I had a huge collection of cookbooks, but got so tired of the stacks laying around the house that I brought a bunch to work. Colleagues adopted all of them. They were beautiful, some perused only once, some more than that. But I’m so enamored of the recipe apps and online recipe searches that it didn’t make sense for me to own so much paper. I know my colleagues are very happy with their acquisitions.
I also collect fountain pens. I have one that belonged to my grandfather from the 1940s or so. It’s an Eversharp. I have a couple of Waterman pens, a Monte Blanc, and a few others. I used to love to write in brown ink with them, or turquoise. When I was a student at the University of Hawaii I used them all the time. But when I became a newspaper reporter, it wasn’t practical to pair up a fountain pen with a skinny reporter’s notebook. So these little relics are at rest and every once in a while I shake the ink to be sure it’s still watery, and I try to remember how to fill the bladders. I tell myself that I’ll get back to that. But here I am writing a blog entry, all 10 fingers at work, and it’s so much easier. When I would write with the fountain pens, I’d worry so much that my thoughts would escape me before my fingers could write them with my beautiful pen. I’d also worry that somebody might see it. I also worried that a blotch here and there, a crossed out word, a mistake, a strange thought, would be so embarrassing to me.
I don’t care anymore.
I just bought myself a small pocket journal. I’ve started to use it. But I haven’t found the right pen for it yet. It has a few entries and I’ve decided that this journal would be used for anything. I’ve decided that I wouldn’t be embarrassed by somebody picking it up and reading it if I left it behind somewhere (and hopefully would get it back). It’s time, I told myself, to write down my thoughts I wish to develop when I’m off the clock and on my own time.
You know what? I think I just found a reason to start using my fountain pens again. It’s time to collect my thoughts. I have to make up for lost time.
Oh, how I heart this post. I’m entirely digital for much of what I do, but I’ve got a soft spot for analog when it comes to writing and writing instruments. Never had the pleasure of owning real quality pens, but even cheap fountain pens are a joy to write with. And I’ve got notebooks stashed just about everywhere.
Ink spots, crossed-out words, coffee stains, irregular (or if you’re me, illegible) lettering — I love it all. Journaling by hand makes every letter a unique animal, shaped by the curve of its neighbors, the flow of the pen, and the hand of the writer (under- or over-caffeinated, as the case may be). If there’s an equivalent of terroir for writing, I suspect it’s something like this.
Good on ya for pen-and-papering it up. I love it.
Mahalo, Ryan. It’s always nice to get a visit from you to my blog!