Reflections on the Pen

I first published this article on Medium.com November 19, 2019.

No one has hacked you yet, Pen! Congratulations on your high-level cybersecurity!

You have sometimes been crushed in a pocket and leaked vital inkformation all over the offending pocket, but no one needed to go into exile over the event. The pants or shirt were washed separately, yes, and repurposed as rags or gardening/painting/cleaning/lounging-around-the-house clothing.

Digression: The pants or shirt in question were work wear until the fated inksplosion. Up to that moment, they were not deemed comfy enough to wear for lounging, etc. Yet, now that they have this flaw they are, all of a sudden, comfy. Perhaps we formed an attachment to the clothing so recently in the trenches with us. Perhaps the items have not been sufficiently amortized, and we’ll be damned if we’re going to throw out a shirt or pants that had hardly been worn!

Back to our reliable pen. Whether fine point, roller ball, or felt tip; whether blue, black, red, or some other magical color, we rely on our favorites.

They are never far from reach—just the other side of the table, on the other kitchen counter with a pad of paper. We can find one in almost every room of the house.

The computer keyboard also appreciates a fine pen as evidenced by the collection of three or four next to the keyboard at any given moment.

We know how a pen will interact with a certain piece of paper or, really, any surface. Our most trusted friend, Pen, may occasionally be set aside in favor of a more specialized pen. In these moments, there is a fragment of emotion—a quarter-formed pang of regret in our disloyalty to the Pen. This disquiet of the mind results in the hasty recapping of the speciality pen, and its immediate return to storage. After which we quickly pick up the Pen and add “milk” to the grocery list—a completely unnecessary addition to any grocery list because we simply know when we are out of milk, no note required. We jotted it on the list with our trusty Pen, so Pen would know they were not forgotten.

Never forget Pen…or milk.

Hang on, where did I put that pen….

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