Independence Day

When I was young and foolish, I wasn’t much different than I am now. But I did go to a lot more concerts. Back then, I really liked Bruce Springsteen. I used to like this song in concert, and I still think of it when July Fourth rolls around.  This time, I’ll press play.

I always feel lucky to have been born an American, never more so than on the Fourth. And it’s always a fun day in our house, because we host a Fourth of July barbecue featuring my husband’s smoked ribs, pulled pork and beef brisket, and another friend’s homemade pies (usually red, white and/or blue). Then everyone packs up the coolers and troops over to our town’s fireworks at the beach. We look forward to this all year.

If you’re in the US, I hope you’re going to have a happy Fourth, and if you’re elsewhere, I hope you’re having a happy Monday.

Fountain Pen Favorites for June 2016

calendar image

June meant beautiful weather, and great pens and inks. Unfortunately the last week for me was taken over by non-pen things. So it’s a treat to look back at the pen things.

1.  Aurora Optima 360 Monviso. Of course this beautiful pen is June’s number one highlight. This is my big purchase, probably for the year. Unless Pelikan strikes again. But ending the year with the Monviso would be just fine.  It’s a great-looking pen, with a great-writing stub.

2. Montblanc BMW ink. Montblanc BMW ink is such a nice blue. And yet as far as I can tell, Montblanc isn’t selling it through the usual US dealers. That’s a shame. Hopefully that will change.

3. Parker Penman Sapphire. It’s true. Parker Penman Sapphire really is the top — the Coliseum, the Louvre museum, a Shakespeare sonnet and a Bendel bonnet. It really is all that. Just a beautiful blue ink. Alas, no longer available.

4. Fountain pen friends. I just happen to owe all of those good June experiences to friends. I’m pretty lucky.



Photo by Dafne Cholet, Flickr, used under Creative Commons license.

Lamy Lx: You’ve Got My Attention

Lamy Lx

This photo showed up today on the internet. I believe the original source is probably the Instagram and blog of a store in Belgium called Penworld. I don’t know if this photo will stay up much longer, but for now, here it is.

Oooh, ahhh. Or yuck, as the case may be.  People definitely have varying opinions, and I’ve been enjoying hearing them. And I am sort of going back and forth, myself.

On that blog link, Penworld reports that the Lx line will be out in September. The Lx is like a nicer Al-Star, that keeps the anodized finish, the shape and the section, but upscales the pen. The Lx has an aluminum case, and its clip will be plated with palladium or ruthenium. The steel nib also has a fancier finish.

Another store, Appelboom, said on Instagram that the Lx price might be about 50 euros in Europe.

So far, everyone I know who doesn’t like the Al-Star and Safari still doesn’t like the Lx.  Essentially, it seems like just a more expensive version of the pen they already dislike. So it’s not converting anyone, at least not yet.

On the other hand, I love the Safari, and at first I thought I’d end up with two of the Lx pens, the gold and the pink. Those are the the pretty colors, maybe the feminine colors. And they are the two colors that don’t look exactly like Al-Stars I already have.

But now that I look more at the pink, it’s raising some questions. I do hope it’s not the same color as the old Raspberry Al-Star. And the gold one — it does look different than the Copper Orange Al-Star from 2015; I really hope it is.

Well, we’ll have to see when they come out.

I do like the idea of the Lx. I love the Safari, but the Al-Star has never excited me. If the Lx is more attractive, and more sophisticated, I think that would be great. I’d be more likely to pick up that kind of Lx at a store, and I’d be more likely to buy it as a gift for an adult.

I will point out one excellent negative comment, from the “not-a-fan” side. My friend Dan was saying the Lx colors look like iPhone colors. Which is pretty funny. Because, now that he mentions it ….

But what if the Lx colors are older Lamy Al-Star colors? Then maybe Apple was inspired by Lamy, right? All our minds would be blown.

Anyway, no matter what the Lx turns out to be, we all know one thing it’s not. Green. So, yay.