Tuesday, September 25, 2007

The last gift you should ever give to a writer is a pen.

I haven't been able to sleep lately. It's not unusual this time of year.

But, I am not here to write about sleep.

I am here to write about the most glorious instrument of writing--The Pen!

(I don't use pencils for creative writing, ever, I hate them.)

My favorite pen of all time, ever is the Sanford Expesso One Medium Point Felt Tip Pen in black.

Several years ago, Sanford, in an act of extreme malice stopped production on the Sanford Expresso One Medium Point Felt Tip Pen. When I found out, I ordered as many of the pens as possible. I horded away my three dozen pens and over the course of the past four years have used them sparingly and lovingly, knowing that, one day, I would have to find a replacement. Of course, there can never be a replacement for the Sanford Expresso One Medium Point Felt Tip Pen, but with only nine pens left, I am gearing up for a great quest--the quest to find my new writin' pen.

For some time, I intermittently used the Pilot C-2. It writes with a line that is a little too thin and always inspired me to write weepy, overly sentimental prose. That and the ink runs out too quickly. (Ah, and another problem, it smears on the glossy paper of the Sunday NY Times Magazine, and you know, I need a good pen for my crossword puzzle.)

I have always been a fan of the Sharpie Ultra Fine Point Permanent Marker, but the ink has a tendency to bleed through the paper. However, the pen is smooth and the sensation of using this pen to write prose reminds me a little bit of the Sanford Expresso One Medium Point Felt Tip Pen. But the cons outweigh the pros, and so, I must say thanks, but no thanks Sharpie.

Any sort of thin Bic or PaperMate pen... I just can't.... they're just... so, so bad.

I believed that I had found what may possibly be my closest hope for replacement for the Sanford Expresso One Medium Point Felt Tip Pen when I saw the design of the Pentel Rolling Writer Medium Point Black Ink Pen. I do like the way it writes, in a strong, direct line. And I like that the strong line doesn't bleed through the page. It also passed the Sunday NY Times Magazine crossword puzzle test with flying colors(!) My only hesitation is that it's a roller ball pen and not a felt tip. My history with any type of ball point pen is that they inevitably leak and force me to throw out a perfectly good dress.

My final candidate (so far) was the Pilot Precise Rolling Ball X-Fine Pen. I hate that they call it "X-Fine" instead of "Extra Fine" I also hate that it is, indeed, and extra fine pen with a very thin line. I tried using it last night and only wrote about weepy girls. No good!

So, it seems, my best candidate for replacement is the Pentel Rolling Writer Medium point black ink pen. Still, The Sanford Expresso One Medium Point Felt Tip Pen has always been a constant for me in my writing life and I just can't bring myself to imagine the day when I won't have a Sanford Expresso One Medium Point Felt Tip Pen tucked away in a desk drawer. A safe object that I know to be reliable and strong. A pen with a hearty line that still allows for a feminine line and curve to my handwriting.

This pen has balanced checkbooks in five states. This pen has written letters, those mailed and those tucked away. This pen has filled countless notebooks and diaries. This pen has put me in college and grad school. This pen has marked pages, notes written in margins, that could save the soul of a story before I dismissed the piece as incomplete. This pen has graded papers. This pen has encouraged students to meet the challenge. This pen has completed the Sunday NY Times Magazine crossword puzzle. This pen has been more constant than friendships, relationships, pets, and zip codes for me.

And now, I am preparing to say good-bye.

If this was an NBC SitCom, a montage would go here, set to some acoustic David Gray song, recounting my fondest memories with the Sanford Expresso One Medium Point Felt Tip Pen.

Sigh (m.lady wipes away a single tear).



Lindsay said...

This post, while it made me a bit sad to think I'd ever have to say goodbye to my dear uni-ball deluxe micro, also made me want to roll around under my desk with laughter (especially when I saw the pen in the bow). Kudos to my slut!!

Sumit said...

Came across your blog post looking for reviews on the Pentel Rolling Writer. Interesting post.
By the way, did your favorite Sanford One Expresso get replaced by the Sanford Liquid Expresso. They look similar from their description.
Take a look, they are available