Tuesday, August 19, 2008
Writing in color
I've been following our own Kathryn Lilley's other blog, The Kill Zone, with much delight.
Besides KL's entries, I loved John Gilstrap's recent blog on his fascination with pens.
I'm addicted to pens myself, but John's taste is better than mine. He loves his old fountain pen and would probably appreciate a beautiful antique writing implement, whereas I'm happy with one that says I (heart) Des Moines and will ship anyone who sends me one a signed book.
For me, it's actually more than pens. It's all office supplies. Early on my husband figured this out and stopped trying to find just the right necklace or earrings and bought me a paper cutter for my birthday one year. Wow, my own paper cutter, like the ones only offices and schools had back then! I guess my gratitude was apparent because he's been sticking with the category ever since—an electric pencil sharpener, a supersize three-hole punch, an electric stapler, a postal scale, reams of colored paper, and expensive three-ring binders that don't eat your fingers when you open and close them.
Recently he designed a special package label for sending out "Mayhem in Miniature." I guess I'm a cheap date because this thrills me more than jewelry or candy. Well, maybe not more than candy.
One year he bought me an amethyst necklace, too delicate for my taste, but it cost him a great deal—not in money but in the discomfort he feels in every retail store except Radio Shack and Fry's Electronics. I worried that he'd notice how infrequently I wore the necklace, so I pulled it out last week and wore it to a party.
"Where did you get that necklace?" he asked. I won't worry anymore.
Now my relatives and friends have caught on and I have Vera Bradley folders, teal bookends in the shape of hands, and packing tape with an image of a zipper.
And an update to that old paper cutter: one that has a laser beam shoot down the side, for perfect alignment, as soon as you raise the handle!
When I was a kid pencils were green and pens were black and dipped in ink wells. Paper bags were brown, folders were manila, clipboards were brown, index cards and mailing envelopes were white. The first sticky notes came in yellow only, with no clever sayings or die cut edges.
No wonder I lived an uninspired life, coming to writing only as an older adult. I needed color and florals and plaids to get me going.
Any ideas for an office supply I shouldn't be without?