Once Works Well was pure technology. Now it seeks merely to divert.
Pansy subjects - Verse! Opera! Domestic trivia! - are now commonplace.
The 300-word limit for posts is retained. The ego is enlarged

Sunday, 28 September 2008

Feels right, writes right


My Logitech wireless mouse, a gift about four years ago at an eye-watering £73, is showing signs of terminalism and I’m presently road-testing a replacement. The Logitech was rechargeable and had its own neat little charging bay; the newer one works on disposable batteries. “It is of course lighter,” said my excellent and local computer man. “If you can’t get on with it we’ll find you something heavier at half the price.”

After a week I hardly notice the difference in weight. Which is surprising since I’m very weight conscious when it comes to ball-points.

Yes I do still use a pen and I’m pretty choosy about the make. It’s got to be a Parker. The one on the left was bought decades ago and I have even bought refills for it. The one on the right was a freebie from an insurance company. Underneath – for the sharp-sighted – is a memo list of techno-blog subjects.

It’s not just the weight that matches the Parker so sweetly to my fingers. Length, thickness and the shape of the pointy end all play a part. Not that the Parker improves my writing. That remains terrible and I was punished repeatedly for it at school. It’s simply that I feel I can write better – in a literary sense – with the Parker. No doubt a delusion brought on by old age.

Fact is, the reverse is true. I feel mentally clumsy using one of those stalk-like give-aways. I wonder if Parker sponsors bloggers.

5 comments:

Plutarch said...

How do you feel about rollerballs, which seem much easier to write with because the ink is more liquid? And what about the technology of producing biros, BICS and other boil points etc compared with that of roller balls. And what about fountain pens? The scratch of an old fashioned, shaped nib and the flow of ink is something which many people still value. Then there is the metal nibbed dip-pen? And the quill?

Barrett Bonden said...

Ça vaudra le voyage.

Relucent Reader said...

Excellent post, sir. I work on the web all day, so when I write, I want to write: I use a fine nibbed fountain pen. After the clacking of keys, the scritchscritch of fountain pen on paper is immensely satisfying.
As to ballpoints: I use a Cross pen (still based in RI) or a huskier Papermate(about the size and heft of a Parker) that I was lucky enough to find.Finding a good pen really makes my day. It is a simple but happy life.

Plutarch said...

Perhaps not the whole journey but could we not have a post on a fountain pen.

Avus said...

Yes - a post on the fountain pen. I have a 1956 Parker 51 (the gorgeous streamlined "bullet") which I still use with immense satisfaction