Friday, October 31, 2008

Cards and Letters, please

Many of you are familiar with The PENguin’s webmaster (or webmistress, as she prefers it) Gillian Hart. She is an occasional poster on the various pen lists and has a strong presence on The PENguin website through the Webmaster’s Corner.

What some of you may not know, is that despite her charm and wit and her intellectual attainments (a Master’s Degree in English Lit.) Gilly is multiply disabled.

To make a long story short, she is now extremely ill in hospital with a rather guarded prognosis.

I can’t help but feel that both the prayers and best wishes and cards and letters from the pen community could help in her hoped for recovery.

If you can, I know that both she and her family would appreciate cards and letters. I do not have a hospital address yet, so for now, if you feel moved to do so, please send mail to:

Gillian S. Hart
9 Swanson Oaks
Waitakere 0612
New Zealand


Sunday, October 19, 2008

Fooling around with the camera

You are unlikely ever to see another Rover Ro-Set, Italian

Not quite a button filler, and not taken today, but I ran across it in old files, a truly great pen from Germany, a Rakete.

Montegrappa Elmo

Minerva, OMAS sub-brand

Picking up on Pentrace's Sunday topic of button fillers
Swiss Askas

Soennecken Präsident 1 and a mystery pen

WTF, a Juska? German

Nettuno Superba

Some Thoughts on Pens

After collecting for nearly twenty five years, much of that time pretty intensely, there are few pens I "need"( whatever that means). But every so often (actually pretty often) something catches my eye. Such it was with this when a pen friend showed it to me a few weeks ago.

He is in the process of culling his collection but was unsure whether this set would stay or not. That only made it more attractive to me, of course, so when he contacted me a few days ago . . .

Well you see the result.

and a better image

It's a Waterman's Deluxe Ink Vue set in the copper ray colour, made in the mid 1930s to compete with Parker's wildly successful Vacumatic.

I think I still favour the Vacumatic, but the Ink Vue, with its deco-ish accents and unconventional plastic has its charms.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Anyone who teaches can tell you that apart from dealing with education administrators, the worst part of academic life is marking undergraduate papers.

We, it's close to the midpoint of my semester and essays and quizzes (yes, quizzes in college) are coming at me fast and furious.

How not to lose my mind now that I no longer drink and grade?

By mixing it up with pens!

Here's a small selection of what I've been grading with over the last few days.

German safeties seem to be a favourite, here's an Astoria with a fine nib that is a dream to write with

This Aurora 80th Anniversary is a sweet little pen that masquerades as a continental overlay safety, and with a 14 K Bock nib it writes like a dream

This Goldfink is another favourite among the German safeties. I'm too lazy to pull out and pose the Osmia 6 and the Salamander I've used, as well.

Just to change things up, I've been using my Azure Parker Senior Maxima with an incredibly flexxy fine nib to mark papers as well.

This is a bit of a cheat. There's no way I could ever mark papers with the music nib on this Rossi 800N.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

A PENguin Update

Check out The PENguin! In the past few days we have added more than three dozen new pens, many of them limited editions and some very uncommon vintage pens.

We also have coming some limited markdowns (not yet indicated on the site) in The PENthouse--on the Tortoise M400 sets, the lizard 101, the OMAS Ferrari set and the NOS Rap-pens.

Here are some teasers:

This Aurora is just drop-dead gorgeous (apologies for the tiny image)

This Concerto may be the prettiest Pelikan Limited made

Except maybe the Blue Ocean

We're calling this one of a kind special Complete Transparency from The PENguin

This is a sweet Pelikan 400 set

We also have coming some limited markdowns (not yet indicated on the site) in The PENthouse--on the Tortoise M400 sets, the lizard 101, the OMAS Ferrari set and the NOS Rap-pens.

Visit The PENguin at: