7 Things You Should Know Before Dating a Fountain Pen Addict

You’ve got a little crush. But your crush has a little crush on the newest TWSBI or Lamy fountain pen.  If you find yourself dating a fountain pen addict you may be immersed in a strange new world. Not only is there a new vernacular, but this person seems to be obsessed with a writing instrument, ink, even the paper to write on! This journey will come with a lot of love letters, but those may be coupled with some unusual habits. Here are a few things to help guide you along the way.

  • Those syringes aren’t what you think

See a couple of dirty syringes lying around? They are a legitimate way to fill a fountain pen, not an undercover drug problem.

  • You caught your date red handed? Don’t worry, he or she (probably) isn’t a murderer.

Ink has a tendency to get on hands. And faces. Sometimes also pets and friends. Embrace this as an endearing quality. Whisper to your friends, “Oh, that? Well (s)he’s a writer.”

  • Nib Creep — it’s not some creepy guy named Nib

Is nib creep causing your love distress? Don’t put on your ninja costume and get ready for a rumble quite yet… it’s a totally normal phenomenon of ink leaking and pooling on the pen nib.

  • That smell? It’s seriously coming from the Noodler’s pen

Yeah, these have a distinct smell. Something along the lines of baby diapers and old chili. Don’t worry though! The smell fades… eventually.

  • No, they aren’t obsessed with real Baby’s Bottoms 

Hearing this phrase thrown around casually may make you pause, but rest assured, it is a real term for describing a certain type of flawed nib. A little micro-mesh can solve this problem and stop the phrase from ruining your dinner.

  • Want to know a bit about their hobby? Expect an earful!

Most fountain pen addicts don’t get a lot of time to talk about their favorite hobby. While online forums have changed that for the better, a real life conversation can be really enthralling (to them). If you want to know about the specifics of the pen they are signing the credit card receipt with, be prepared to learn a bit more than you bargained for.

  • Yes, that new pen is essential

They spent how much on that pen!?! When you don’t understand the hobby or the nuances of a gold nib vs a steel one, the price tags associated with some fountain pens can be surprising.  Like any hobby, there is a bit of an investment. Dancers spend a lot on shoes, golfers need great clubs, and tools for that wood working hobby can add up. Their hobby adds value to their life, even if you don’t understand it.

Some other things to consider — your fountain pen fanatic will also be romantic, nostalgic, and at the same time practical and creative. Keep that in mind the next time you get hear about the latest Lamy release or get a whiff of that Noodler’s pen.

Write on,
Madigan

2017-10-11T04:07:47+00:00 May 15th, 2015|A Goulet Life|62 Comments
  • David Thompson

    LOLOLOL… mea culpa!

  • David Thompson

    LOLOLOL… mea culpa!

  • What’s with the smell? I make wood pens but never had a problem with smell. Is it just manufactured pens?

    • Madigan

      It’s the material that the pens are made of. It does go away with time though! I absolutely love my Noodler’s pens and write with them daily.

  • MusialWoodworkStudio

    What's with the smell? I make wood pens but never had a problem with smell. Is it just manufactured pens?

  • Madigan

    It's the material that the pens are made of. It does go away with time though! I absolutely love my Noodler's pens and write with them daily.

  • Mary Bucklew

    Very nicely done, Madigan! I can see why Brian and Rachel have absolute faith in their team while they are away! Bravo!

    • Madigan

      Hi Mary! That’s so nice of you to say. We definitely miss them when they are gone but it is nice to know they trust us! πŸ™‚

  • Mary Bucklew

    Very nicely done, Madigan! I can see why Brian and Rachel have absolute faith in their team while they are away! Bravo!

  • pb kenyon

    This is hilarious! And truly lovely. Way to go Madigan!

    • Madigan

      So glad you enjoyed it, PB! πŸ™‚

  • pb kenyon

    This is hilarious! And truly lovely. Way to go Madigan!

  • Love this! SO hilarious! I will be sharing this with my hubby πŸ˜‰ Thank you for the laughs!!! πŸ˜€

    • Madigan

      Hey Tessy! I had so much fun writing it. I hope he likes it too! πŸ™‚

  • Love this! SO hilarious! I will be sharing this with my hubby πŸ˜‰ Thank you for the laughs!!! πŸ˜€

  • Madigan

    Hi Mary! That's so nice of you to say. We definitely miss them when they are gone but it is nice to know they trust us! πŸ™‚

  • Madigan

    So glad you enjoyed it, PB! πŸ™‚

  • Madigan

    Hey Tessy! I had so much fun writing it. I hope he likes it too! πŸ™‚

  • Tom Johnson

    Madigan, I knew this was your creation when I read the first few items! This is so much fun, LOVE IT! You had way too much fun putting this together, didn’t you? I’d like to see your handwritten notes.
    β€’ No, Ahab is not someone she’s running around with, it’s her pen.

    • Madigan

      Hi Tom!! I had a great time with this one. She may, in fact, be running around with an Ahab… it’s just in her purse. πŸ˜›

  • Tom Johnson

    Madigan, I knew this was your creation when I read the first few items! This is so much fun, LOVE IT! You had way too much fun putting this together, didn't you? I'd like to see your handwritten notes.
    β€’ No, Ahab is not someone she's running around with, it's her pen.

  • Kathy

    Too funny, Madigan. I’d love to know what your funniest story is about explaining this addiction we have. I get the strangest looks talking about Lamy’s (not llamas’) replaceable nibs, or Pelikans (not Pelicans). It’s amazing to me how many people my age (old) have never written with a fountain pen and have no idea what to do with it! I’ve recently started going to estate and garage sales looking for pens. I love the looks on people’s faces when I ask them if they have any fountain pens! Priceless.

    • Madigan

      Hi Kathy! I was literally at an antique mall yesterday asking for fountain pens. I mostly gift my enthusiasm- almost all members of my very large family have received one! Luckily, they all seem to be enjoying the experience. πŸ™‚

  • Kathy

    Too funny, Madigan. I'd love to know what your funniest story is about explaining this addiction we have. I get the strangest looks talking about Lamy's (not llamas') replaceable nibs, or Pelikans (not Pelicans). It's amazing to me how many people my age (old) have never written with a fountain pen and have no idea what to do with it! I've recently started going to estate and garage sales looking for pens. I love the looks on people's faces when I ask them if they have any fountain pens! Priceless.

  • Starchix

    Laughed out loud at this one. So funny! A fountain pen user for over 50 years now, I am nearly blind to ink stains on my fingers. One time I was at the bank, and the teller happened to glance at my arm, and said,’oh gosh, you should get that mole looked at — it’s a really bad color’ and I looked down to see a great big blob of reddish brown ink on my arm. Don’t ask me how I got ink on my arm. But I just laughed and said it was ink — she didn’t believe me at first, but then just smiled.

    And I still remember the time when I ended a massive pen-refilling session with not one bit of ink on my hands. It was a memorable day, and I thought — wow, this could be a lifetime accomplishment! πŸ˜‰

    • Madigan

      Hey Starchix! I’m very impressed that you managed to fill your pens without spilling any. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve left the office only to discover ink on my face when I get home… I think everyone around here is just used to it! πŸ˜›

  • Starchix

    Laughed out loud at this one. So funny! A fountain pen user for over 50 years now, I am nearly blind to ink stains on my fingers. One time I was at the bank, and the teller happened to glance at my arm, and said,'oh gosh, you should get that mole looked at — it's a really bad color' and I looked down to see a great big blob of reddish brown ink on my arm. Don't ask me how I got ink on my arm. But I just laughed and said it was ink — she didn't believe me at first, but then just smiled.

    And I still remember the time when I ended a massive pen-refilling session with not one bit of ink on my hands. It was a memorable day, and I thought — wow, this could be a lifetime accomplishment! πŸ˜‰

  • Lu

    πŸ™‚ I donΒ΄t have curtains in my kitchen and am sometimes worried what people think when they see me cleaning syringes…

    • Madigan

      Hi Lu! Haha! I’m sure they know about your fountain pen hobby? πŸ˜›

  • Lu

    πŸ™‚ I donΒ΄t have curtains in my kitchen and am sometimes worried what people think when they see me cleaning syringes…

  • Steve K.

    Nice piece Madigan! And spot on.

    • Madigan

      Thanks Steve!! πŸ™‚

  • Steve K.

    Nice piece Madigan! And spot on.

  • Madigan

    Hi Tom!! I had a great time with this one. She may, in fact, be running around with an Ahab… it's just in her purse. πŸ˜›

  • Madigan

    Hi Kathy! I was literally at an antique mall yesterday asking for fountain pens. I mostly gift my enthusiasm- almost all members of my very large family have received one! Luckily, they all seem to be enjoying the experience. πŸ™‚

  • Madigan

    Hey Starchix! I'm very impressed that you managed to fill your pens without spilling any. I can't tell you how many times I've left the office only to discover ink on my face when I get home… I think everyone around here is just used to it! πŸ˜›

  • Madigan

    Hi Lu! Haha! I'm sure they know about your fountain pen hobby? πŸ˜›

  • Madigan

    Thanks Steve!! πŸ™‚

  • Rodrigo

    I really liked this article, Madigan! Sometimes people see me funny when I walk down the hall in the office while helding syringes on my hands

  • Rodrigo

    I really liked this article, Madigan! Sometimes people see me funny when I walk down the hall in the office while helding syringes on my hands

  • Paul Burberry

    That was a well put piece of writing. That will be forwarded immediately. My Noodler’s Ahab is 1 year old now and still stinks to high heaven.

  • Paul Burberry

    That was a well put piece of writing. That will be forwarded immediately. My Noodler's Ahab is 1 year old now and still stinks to high heaven.

  • Winnie Dolderer

    That was a great post, Madigan! Made me laugh! After Fountain Pens became my hobby, my husband got interested in it too, so we have a blast “sharing” the hobby together.

  • Winnie Dolderer

    That was a great post, Madigan! Made me laugh! After Fountain Pens became my hobby, my husband got interested in it too, so we have a blast "sharing" the hobby together.

  • Ruth Morrisson

    Great post! I especially liked the last point, and the conversation with the Philistine (er, BIC fine BP user) would go something like this: “Yes, I really DID need that Parker Challenger I found in that antiques mall in West Virginia, and yes, I DID need a backup bottle of Kung Te Cheng. And really, dear. I can *tell* the difference (besides the price) between Black Swan in Australian Roses (old formula) and Iroshihzuku Yama-budo…. And at the cost of those two sumgai 51s it was cheaper to buy them than not buy them. And that Pelikan M400? Sure, it was pricy — but look how much a *new* M400 would have cost; plus you can’t *get* Brown Tortoise anymore….”

  • Ruth Morrisson

    Great post! I especially liked the last point, and the conversation with the Philistine (er, BIC fine BP user) would go something like this: "Yes, I really DID need that Parker Challenger I found in that antiques mall in West Virginia, and yes, I DID need a backup bottle of Kung Te Cheng. And really, dear. I can *tell* the difference (besides the price) between Black Swan in Australian Roses (old formula) and Iroshihzuku Yama-budo…. And at the cost of those two sumgai 51s it was cheaper to buy them than not buy them. And that Pelikan M400? Sure, it was pricy — but look how much a *new* M400 would have cost; plus you can't *get* Brown Tortoise anymore…."

  • Mike Winn

    I loved the post, Madigan, and will repost it to my wife (who will find it amusing too). I must say that not all Noodler’s pens have a charcteristic smell. I was fortunate to win the race for a Neponset when they first came out, and it has never smalled bad at all. Its classic warm celluloid body and gushing musical nib were everything I had hoped for.

  • Mike Winn

    I loved the post, Madigan, and will repost it to my wife (who will find it amusing too). I must say that not all Noodler's pens have a charcteristic smell. I was fortunate to win the race for a Neponset when they first came out, and it has never smalled bad at all. Its classic warm celluloid body and gushing musical nib were everything I had hoped for.

  • Otter

    I don’t know how I missed this post, Madigan, but it was a great one! Very funny and true. And don’t forget the odd obsession with different kinds of paper. Most people might notice lined or unlined, but fountain pen addicts will finger the textured surfaces and need to know the weight before they will buy it. πŸ˜€

  • Otter

    I don't know how I missed this post, Madigan, but it was a great one! Very funny and true. And don't forget the odd obsession with different kinds of paper. Most people might notice lined or unlined, but fountain pen addicts will finger the textured surfaces and need to know the weight before they will buy it. πŸ˜€

  • Sophia

    This is too good. Great post, Madigan!

  • Sophia

    This is too good. Great post, Madigan!

  • Jil McIntosh

    My husband (who only uses ballpoints, and considering how hard he presses, that’s a good thing) has been known to come into my office, need to write something down, and say, “I need a REAL pen! Where are the REAL pens?!”

    • But … your fountain pens ARE the real pens! Unlike ballpoint rabble it is rare that we fountain penners do not have a writing instrument at hand. Ballpoints are cheap, disposable and thus lose-able, whereas even a lower end fountain pen is something you don’t want to lose because it costs more than a ballpoint.

      Except this Ahab I hate, I’ve been TRYING to lose it with no success so far. (It just spit ink all over my desk, my hands and arms so I’m a bit irritated with it just this minute.)

  • Jil McIntosh

    My husband (who only uses ballpoints, and considering how hard he presses, that's a good thing) has been known to come into my office, need to write something down, and say, "I need a REAL pen! Where are the REAL pens?!"

  • Christine Salvatore

    Noodler’s pens smell like what pens smelled like back in the 50s when I was first learning to write. At least the ones I have do/did. I’d heard about the smell, so I inhaled cautiously and was instantly transported back to Mrs. Magnant’s class in Oxford, Mass! Oh, and I was smart: I married a guy who is into (in no particular order) watches, knives and fountain pens. 34 years and going strong! It’s really easy – though a bit expensive – to buy him a gift, too!

    • bit101

      Watches, knives and fountain pens? The man knows his priorities. I’m doing well with knives and pens, but need to step up my watch game. I only have three. Waiting for my first Noodlers pen to arrive in the mail at this very moment. I have to say, I’m kind of looking forward to see what it smells like. πŸ™‚

    • Katherine Stewart

      I’ve noticed that too, I tend to collect pocket knives, pen knives (and I even know what a pen knife is!) Pens and I love pocket watches too. I also appreciate a good flashlight too.

  • Miss Thundercat

    Such a fun post, I love it!!

  • BastardSecretary

    Once, I absentmindedly put the end of the Ahab in my mouth. Only once.

    • Charles Fikes

      I’ve done that!. no, not really

  • Runnin_Ute

    I never really minded the smell of my Red Mesa Tortoise Konrad. Even right out of the box it was light, different but somewhat pleasant. Lamy? An Al Star was my first pen – remember the “aluminum” finish that was discontinued a while back? That is mine. (Circa 1998)

    But dear, those Pelikan’s I found on ebay? Less than half what the same pen would be new….

    And oh, the inks…. See the sheen on the Barrier Reef Blue and Sydney Harbour Blue? Isn’t it lovely? And yes, that is the correct spelling…..