Categorystuff

Sheaffer pen, Skrip blue, Field Notes Pitch Black

John gave me an old fountain pen he had that he’d used in school back in the day (ha!). I don’t know the model, just the brand Sheaffer and that it has a nib labeled M and Made in the USA.
Unidentified Sheaffer fountain pen

So I bought some Sheaffer Skrip cartridges for it and installed the blue one.
Writing sample
That’s it on my Field Notes Pitch Black notebook. I kept spelling Sheaffer wrong here and also I clearly don’t know how to spell unidentified. Grr.

Field Notes isn’t really a notebook that I use a fountain pen with much. Usually I use a pencil (currently a Dixon Ticonderoga 1388 – 2.5 Medium which I think are available everywhere) or a Pilot Hi-Tec-C or any ol’ pen or pencil really. I like the Field Notes, and especially love this Pitch Black edition because while I like blank pages for journaling, I love dot grid for my daily pocket notebook. The dots here are perfect, not too dark. Also like the black cover and the black staples. It’s about the details you know?

Here’s why I don’t use fountain pen, especially not fountain pens with M nibs. Actually it’s not so much better with a Japanese F nib, so really just this Field Notes edition isn’t suited really. (Actually most editions of Field Notes aren’t.) The problem is show through.
Bleed through
Not that that stops me from using fountain pens with it.

For comparison, here’s the same pen on the Miquelrius notebook. There was no show through.
Sheaffer pen on miquelrius notebook

I like the blue ink actually, more than I thought I would — sometimes blues and blacks can be somewhat boring. But when I’m done with this cartridge, I just don’t see myself going out to pick up a bottle of Sheaffer Skrip blue. I don’t know, it’s fine, but I don’t feel LOVE. It’s possible though, that I just won’t ever feel love for a blue ink.

Journal

Leaf inspired me to start journaling a bit. Actually, it mostly just means I buy notebooks that are around 5×7 (A5 equivalent?) that are blank and blather all over it. Sometimes I write random quotes or whatever just to practice handwriting.

I just bought a random Miquerius Flexible journal. It’s 100 blank pages, but it doesn’t stay open by itself which is my preference. Paper seems nice though. Miquelrius flexible journal paper, Diamine Evergreen, TWSBI Mini 1.1mm stub
Doesn’t look like it feathers, and I can use both sides of the paper. I like the elastic that keeps it closed. I think I like notebooks even more when it’s not necessary, but either way.

Still I’m going to buy something else for when I’m done with this one. I think I’d like a hardcover journal that’ll stay open. Also, if possible, I’d like it to have a pretty cover. :)

More Pens!

As long as I’m talking about pens and inks, I have a couple of other ones, too.

That’s my TWSBI Diamond Mini still inked with Diamine Evergreen, same as the previous post. Then a Pilot 78g with a fine nib inked with Waterman Tender Purple. Last one is a Pilot 78g broad nib (but more of a stub) with Pilot Blue Black ink. I like the Pilot 78g, especially around $10, but the converter for refilling ink is really just okay. And using cartridges, which is pretty much the only other option, isn’t half as nice, plus the ink choices are fewer. The ink reservoir and piston mechanism in my TWSBI is much better. Overall, I’d rather get another TWSBI, although I suppose if I lose a 78g I would be less upset. You could spend a lot more on pens, but I think I personally would rather not. I am eying more ink though. :)

The notebook is a small Rhodia notebook with graph rule. It’s a little bit too small, but not bad. I don’t love graph though, blank or dots are my preference. Paper’s excellent of course.

Edit:
I messed up the picture! The pens aren’t lined up by what I wrote; I switched the 2nd and third pens. The one in the middle is the Pilot 78g fine and the one below is Pilot 78g broad.

Pen and ink

Yut bought me a fountain pen a while back. I love it! Analog is fun. :)
TWSBI mini fountain pen

It’s a TWSBI Diamond Mini Clear pen with a 1.1mm stub nib. The stub nib makes everything look fancy. And the piston fill mechanism is super easy to use.

Currently, I have Diamine Evergreen ink in the pen, which is a super dark green. Great ink so far. Flows well, I like the color and the slight variation.

The notebook I wrote on in that picture is a Rhodia dotPad. I really like the paper in the dotPad, but I don’t like the format. It’s hard to use both sides of the paper in a pad, easier in a little notebook, like Field Notes, although I like the Rhodia paper better.

I would recommend everything in the photo except the Rhodia dotPad, which I suppose just isn’t the right tool for me. Writing with a fountain pen is just more fun. And it’s neat (gosh there’s gotta be a better word here) to buy a whole bottle of ink and fill the pen instead of buying a new pen every time it runs out of ink.

Tissue Recommendation

As you probably know by now (am whiner), I have been sick, and carrying around a box of tissue. So I thought I’d update my tissue recommendation!

It’s still Trader Joe’s. (Anticlimactic, no?) There aren’t that many brands of recycled paper tissue available — NRDC has a listing (click on Facial Tissue), although I think it’s somewhat out of date since it says that Trader Joe’s is 10-25% post consumer content whereas the current box I am using says it is 80%. But you’ll notice most of them are Marcal, and dude, TJ’s is better than Marcal — I have reconfirmed this, and have a red nose to show for it. If I remember correctly, it’s better than Seventh Generation too — been a while though. Also, I like the box.

So for now, if you don’t want to contribute to two trees per year’s worth of tissue (average American usage?), plus you want to use recycled paper products (’cause what’s the point of recycling paper if no one wants the resultant products?) then I am recommending Trader Joe’s. But let me know if you find something better, because it’s not super soft with aloe or whatever. I should look into handkerchiefs — one of these days.

I do not like CVS. Not here, nor there.

I don’t know why, but getting prescriptions from CVS is always a hassle. Actually, CVS is always somewhat of a hassle, but let’s start with the pharmacy.

Today, I realized that I needed a refill on my prescription — actually I probably should’ve ordered it already; why CVS doesn’t automatically refill my prescription and send it to me I don’t know. I’m using the CVS Caremark mail order prescription service, but I’ve only just started so it will be my first refill. The bottle had the web site information on it so I went to the site. Not registered yet? Sign up now. So far so good. You need lots of information, some of which isn’t on me, so I hunt it all up and fill out like three forms, and THEN at the very end, after I’ve chosen security questions and put in information about my medication and EVERYTHING, I am told that there is a problem with the site and my account couldn’t be created and please try again later.

What the what?! Grr ok.

So then I call their toll-free phone number — also on the prescription bottle — this must be the only part of the experience that is any good. The computer asks me if I am the patient or a doctor’s representative or a pharmacy. I answer patient. The computer doesn’t understand me. I press the number instead. It asks if I want to refill my prescription, I say yes. The computer doesn’t understand me. It asks for my prescription number. I say it. The computer doesn’t understand me! I enter it using the keypad again. I need to confirm my birthday. I say my birthday. Does not compute! I want to enter it via the phone keypad. IT DOES NOT WORK! I am asked again and again but it never guesses right and doesn’t accept keypad entry! Why not, I don’t know. And finally I am told that a customer service representative will be with me shortly. Once I’m talking with a live person, the whole transaction doesn’t take very long at all. I guess my experience with the live person was actually good too, so there’s that. But why did getting a refill take like half an hour?! (I will be getting my prescription soon, I hope, but who knows. When there was a problem with my initial order, they didn’t call me and it wasn’t until I started to wonder why I hadn’t received anything yet and called them was I told that there was a problem.)

Want to know something funny? I only switched to the mail order service because going to CVS/pharmacy was so awful! I would call and ask for a refill. The computer system would ask me when I want the prescription. I always made sure to pick the next day. Then typically I didn’t even go try and pick it up until the day after the time I’d asked for, but you know what? No matter what, it wasn’t ready yet. They would tell me to wait while they filled it right then, because they were always behind. (The pharmacists and other staff were always nice and helpful and knowledgeable, but always behind.) After a while, I just stopped going to CVS when I was in a rush, but it meant always sitting around for half an hour waiting for the prescription. (Well actually we would go to get coffee or lunch or something, but still we planned it that way figuring that they’d be slow. And they always were.) Sometimes I would purposefully wait until I got a computer generated voicemail message from CVS telling me that my prescription was ready and please pick it up, but even then they weren’t ready!!! I just don’t get it! So I finally switched to the mail order CVS (which is the only choice from my insurance company as far as I know) and <sigh>. At least I only need to deal with it once every three months now instead of every month.

In case you are thinking that the pharmacy is the only bad thing, well it’s not the only, just the worst. The local CVS used to be a Longs, where people were always nice and helpful. Somehow when it switched to CVS, even though it was some of the same people, everything was more confusing and slower. Also, Longs used to have one long line that fed in to the cash registers, but CVS makes you pick a line, and sometimes you pick the wrong one. And the stupid CVS frequent shopper card system generates coupons that tend to expire before I can use them, but I am convinced that it’s part of what’s holding up the line, so really, more annoyance!

I still go sometimes because it’s conveniently walking distance, and because it has some items that are easier to find at CVS than at other local places (items that were there when it was Longs, too, so it’s not an improvement, just not a step back), but it’s never a place I look forward to going to. And in case you think it’s just the one local CVS, actually there’s two, and it’s the same at both. And I go to others in other areas and it’s not better. I wish it would just go back to being as good as the Longs was. Or as good as the Walgreens is — which is where I try to go instead of CVS when I can. I think I’m being reasonable! It’s not an amazing amount of good I’m asking for, just better than CVS is right now.

Video Card

Remember when I posted that I’d gotten a new computer, and Pol made fun of me for running on onboard graphics? Well this past weekend, Blizzard did a free Diablo III beta. And I tried it. And my computer struggled, darn it. So I got a video card, are you happy now?! :) Too bad the free Diablo III weekend is over.

I got a Sapphire AMD Radeon HD 6850.

Here’s the box with the bunnies, because every picture is better with bunnies in it. They’re ignoring it because they’re eating, and they believe in taking care of their bellies first.

Bunnies with Video Card

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