American football kicked off its season this week, just in time to inspire this post. Since the NFL has traditionally played its games on Sunday, we call post-game insights and criticisms “Monday morning quarterbacking.” After all, hindsight is always 20/20. But that can be helpful, too. So maybe it will be useful to look back at my pens and inks last week with a little hindsight.
1. Luckiest guess. Putting Diamine’s Shimmertastic Brandy Dazzle into a Pelikan Ibis with broad nib. The vintage Pelikan has a lot of ink flow, and the nib has a bit of flex, and both those characteristics really showed what Brandy Dazzle could do.
2. Luckiest break. I am very lucky to have a great friend who sent me six Shimmertastic ink samples to play with. They were all such fun.
3. Undeserved criticism award. Diamine took a lot of internet heat for putting the name “Shimmertastic” on its forthcoming ink line. And, yes, “Shimmer” would have been fine. But the truth is, after you use the word “Shimmertastic” a few times, you kind of forget that it sounds silly and just go with it. Heck, the inks do shimmer. And they are sort of fantastic. The power of suggestion worked for me here.
4. Deserved criticism award. Pelikan took a lot of internet heat for its M600 Pink Pelikan box design. And maybe Pelikan should have listened. Though it turns out I liked untying the bow, I think just a bow would have been quite enough to set the box apart. The corset lace design felt a little “ick” to me. And even if you like it, it does seem out-of-step with what is actually a fairly classy and professional pen.
5. Unluckiest break. In 2005, the Chicago Bears had the fourth pick in the NFL draft, which they wasted on a running back whose ignominious Bears career would be over by 2008. Among the players the Bears passed over was Aaron Rodgers, the quarterback of my beloved University of California Golden Bears. Worse, Rodgers was drafted by none other than the Green Bay Packers, arch-rivals of the Bears. Rodgers has gone on to become probably the best quarterback in football, a fact that he demonstrates to Chicago fans twice a year by stomping on our Bears. As he did once again yesterday. Sigh.