The cheap Bics we keep in the board room disappear at an alarming rate - I was tempted to have some printed up with "This pen stolen from the offices of...."but I figured that would actually increase the rate of disappearance as everyone would want to be able to prove they'd taken advantage of a lawyer!
BTW - is Office Depot incapable of sourcing a cheap ball point that doesn't hack its ink all over the place?
Anyway, that is one situation when you don't let someone else use your pen, but I wanted to ask about another one.
What do you do when you are NOT in a professional situation, rather a social one, and someone asks if they can use your pen, and all you are carrying is a fountain pen or two?
We all know that 95% of the public haven't got a clue about how to treat a fountain pen and 90% of them will tell you that they do before grabbing it in a two-fisted death grip and doing their best to gouge their way through whatever they are trying to write on.
If you tell them it is a fountain pen the automatic response is "I know how to write with them", and then I am at a bit of a loss as to what to say next when you indicate that despite their protestations you are obstinately unwilling to allow them to touch your pen.
I've tried the old "I'd as soon loan out my pen as my wife' but that just starts them eyeing my wife (and gets me a nasty glare from her).
I have tried the "If anyone else uses it the lifetime warranty will be void, sorry" but that sounds unconvincing as well as horribly elitist.
I have tried "Sorry, out of ink" but that means you have to remember not to write with it in their presence for the rest of the night.
Has anyone come up with a soft and convincing answer to the question "Can I borrow your pen for a minute" that will not offend?
Giving in, the weak and easy way, can result in splayed nibs or the discovery that all they wanted to borrow it for was to open one can of engine oil, or.....
Edited by wspohn, 07 July 2006 - 14:07.