1/29/2017: Something something last Sunday.

Yeah, see this isn’t a good sign.

I was haunting reddit yesterday, particularly doing some deep diving into /r/fountainpens. I knew…I knew it was a mistake, somewhere in the cobwebs of my mind.

Sorting the posts by ‘top’ and going through them, I saw what looked like one of those insipid ‘unboxing’ posts (people seriously, never do that.) But in fact the poor guy had unwrapped the first layer of his long awaited package to see the bubble wrap drenched in black ink.

Immediately people started chiming in about Goulet’s customer service (I’d never heard of ‘Goulet’ before) and indeed, one of the responses was from a ‘/u/mrsgoulet’ saying they’d get right on it, followed by a bunch of hurrahs and “See? THAT’S customer service.” And assorted accolades.

So…between that and a mention of a twsbi eco or twsbi 580al, I did a search and ended up at Goulet Pens. I may have actually gasped out loud. I certainly turned to look at my wallet, sitting on the desk, and gave it a reassuring pat before apologizing to it for what was almost certainly about to happen.

As expected, I spent the better part of an hour paging through ink descriptions, sampler packs, and pen listings before deciding that yes, it was indeed finally time that I graduated from fountain pen cartridgenoobdom to full refillable ink fountain pens.

It was almost certainly preordained at the moment I started buying fountain pens at all. The first few were these disposable pilot ‘vpen’s. They’re…meh. Then came the LAMY Safari pens. I ADORE the feel of them, but even the extra-fine nibbed ones throw SO much ink on to the page that it’s tough to manage.

I finally came across the Pilot Metro, which is a great balance of weight and page feel, so I’ve been using those and a cheaper pilot ‘ergo’ pen with a thin black plastic body. It’s pretty fragile (he says, having broken one) but I’m not sure I’ve ever written with a finer nib, which I love.

But all of these are $25 and under. Most are under $15.

I didn’t really think much about how much I was enjoying them. It all still felt like a bit of a novelty. But then I picked up one of my trusty old rollerballs, that I’d been SWEARING by for probably 20 years and my lip curled up as I made an ‘uch’ noise, trying to write with it.

So now I was a fountain pen guy. I didn’t think I was quite that pretentious. But meh, fuck it.

My eyes focused back in on the comparison chart between the twsbi eco, the 580, and the 580al, and it was clear that the al was the way to go…along with some inks….and some ink samplers….and a glass pen (you know, a dip pen so I could test the ink samplers without having to fill and empty a cartridge converter or *gasp* my new pen.

It’s really just down hill for me. I don’t have what the guys on /r/fountainpens call a Grail Pen and, God willing, I never will. But… I will.

Bad enough that I’ve got 14 kinds of ink on their way.