Adventures With Fountain Pens


One of the gifts I received from my parents this Christmas was a fountain pen. Specifically the LAMY AL-Star. You can see it in the picture above. It is a lovely pen. Really it is. It almost ruined my carpet, however. Also, I’m a bonehead.

The problem was that the thing didn’t come with instructions at all. I know a pen isn’t supposed to be complicated, but the little ink cartridge it came with was a bit confusing. It really wasn’t obvious which was the cartridge was to go in the pen.

I tried one way, and it fit but no ink came out. So, I flipped it and inserted it into the pen. Unfortunately there were now holes in both ends. Ink came out. Well, it gushed out really. It gushed like blood out of a severed artery. Not that I would know what that would look like. Moving on…

Luckily I got the pen to the sink without it dripping on anything important. Of course, the entire contents of the ink cartridge were lost.

I was able to write a bit with the ink that had already welled up in the tip. I have to say it wrote very smoothly, much nicer than the cheap Bic fountain pens of my youth. I’ll have to pick up a bottle of ink to replace the ink I lost (the pen came with a “converter” you can use to use bottled ink). I hear Noodlers ink is pretty good.

That was the excitement for the day. I had a lot of fun with my wife and daughter. I got to help cut out outfits for the “dress up puppies” (my wife did most of it, though). Towards the end of the night, my daughter got a pillow off the couch, stood in front of the TV, and pretended to play Wii Fit. Sigh. I wish I could afford to buy a Wii for us all to play. Ah well.


As my daughter told us as we were taking down the decorations last night, Christmas is over. I can’t help but feel a little depressed. After all the Christmas specials, all the Christmas songs my daughter has sung, and all the presents she has opened, it’s hard not to miss it all.

So, I walked the ole tree out to the curb last night. It was a good tree. A happy tree. It barely dropped a needle on the ground until I moved it from its’ spot (then it dropped a ton!). Still, it had been up for a month and it was time to go. The last thing I needed was a house fire.

The nice thing is I still have a week to go on my break from work. We may get paid a little less working for a university, but at least we get decent sized vacations.

I don’t know if I’ll be able to do some writing while on break. I really should finish up my novel I wrote in November. We’ll see, I suppose.

Anyhow, anyone else feeling a bit blue?