I’ve never been one to use the cheapest of cheap ten cent ballpoint pens, as they feel crummy and I’ve always mentally associated them with hand pain from my high school days, and have fallen in to using the 0.5mm Uni-Ball Eye Micro which seems alright, but left me having for a long time with “is this it?!”
Last year, I started some substantial study for some skills that are part of my job, and realised that for the first time since the nineties I’d need to “actually study”. I'd read some research suggesting pen & paper could be better, so I bought myself another Uni-Ball Eye Micro that was just for studying, and a Red lined Moleskine and started taking notes.
Very quickly, I noticed a very irritating feature of the Moleskine… it wouldn’t stay open to the page I’m at, and I resorted to using an improvised paperweight. That was far from ideal, even leading my wife to ask why I had my improvised paperweight on my desk (the paperweight in question was a medium sized D shackle I had laying around for unknown reasons)
On the plus side, the whole writing things down in a nicer paper journal was making me feel good about the studying, and it felt like it was helping me retain what I was learning, and was enjoying it. From here I started expanding out to some of the other times I’d been scribbling/sketching ideas to help me think through something. This along with some advice given to me that when using a phone to take notes, it's hard to tell if someone is using it for notes, or is off stuffing around on social media.
So, that was whole Moleskine number two happened, this time I went for completely blank pages and was working well, even more so for sketching as I could go full freeform, but then a new problem set it with older stuff... I couldn’t find it. I struggled on a bit but was really trying to figure out what on earth people did to solve this.
A little later I randomly read about Bullet Journaling and spent some time looking in to what it was, and how it worked, and in the process went on a massive YouTube detour (which is surprising, I much prefer reading than watching videos), and in the process noticed people kept talking about the pens they were using, mainly the Pilot G2, or fountain pens.. what?
Fountain Pens were something my mum talked about using back when she was in school, and I just remember stories about leaks and such (I was also young, and not paying much attention). I went further down the rabbit hole, and went and found that there where some handy local resources, such as the Fountain Pens Australia Facebook group, and through that found out Milligram had a shop that was a lunchtime’s walk distance from work, which after deliberation I purchased my first Lamy Safari