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The Michael J Foxx Factor Or Striving To Capture The 'real' ...

watches pens cameras authenticity

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8 replies to this topic

#1 Dickkooty2

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Posted 28 September 2013 - 21:27

There is a great discussion going on at Sales Of Fountain Pens X Mechanical Watches

 

 

The question concerns the relative growth rates of fountain pen collecting v mechanical watch collecting. Over fifty interesting responses so far with insights into specific rewards and emotional satisfactions of each obsession.

 

 

 

The discussion raises a question in my mind that probably isn't germane to the active discussion, and that may be inappropriate to this particular venue. If not appropriate, I hope the editor will sinply not put up this post as I don't want to be a troll.

 

Here goes.  I am as many may be, overwhelmed with opportunities to both absorb and disperse measages. And the means of both have decome increasingly pure digital. And, if not digital than new forms of mechanical that have nearly replaced the ollder forms of expression.

 

Hand-written communication in analog format - instrument on -paper- is the point of this wonderful site. The meta questions become very particular, ink, FPs, BPs, RBs, paper and the pros and cons of the many offerings. Yet within analog.

 

Watches have their many charms and attractions to express time. From decoration to accuracy to mechanical v battery movements, the opportunirty for expression is enormous.

 

But what is the person/user/collector looking for beyond the depth of collection, fun of the search, care and maintenance of the objects?

 

I think that it is a need for authenticity. the real, at a time when reality becomes more and more virtual.

 

OK. My very peculiar experiences that raises this point. I'm an old guy, Williamsin the '50s, a working career in communications. I've seen and experienceda a number of the changeovers at first hand in printing, design, photography, television, radio, writing techniques, and reproduction.

 

And now I have this reaction to virtual reality. I want more authentic experiences. I'm not talking about children, marriage, career, and all of the experiences that come along with living the life. There is no doubt that they are authentic.

 

I simply find myself needing to write with a pen and ink, rather than a BP or RB, because the pen and ink goes back to my first experiences of real and authentic in writing and reading messages from people I knew. I have bought mechanical watches because I want to wind then to know that Time can indeed 'wind down'. I've just dusted off my film camera and equipment because I want the feel of capturing an image mechanically that I will see as an analog print on paper. I am starting to stop and sketch scenes i pen and ink rather than pull out my phone.

 

I am not trying to be a Luddite. I believe that the new technical achievements have opened our world beyond our imagination. I need, however, to be able to have some small physical portion of my surroundings that I can define as 'real' in other and older terms.



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#2 Seele

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Posted 29 September 2013 - 04:42

Personally I collect several types of things, including watches and pens: each area is relatively specific: I focus mainly on - but not exclusively Russian watches, and Chinese and Indian pens. Both kinds of instruments are of course functional, but unlike the majority of people who ask "what's the best watch I can get for $500" I am the type who look at them also as manifestations of the specific social, economical, and technical environments in which they were made, rather than looking at them as purely objects. In that sense they acquire an extra dimension that makes them a bit more "real", beyond just being mere objects that I can get easily at any high street shop. I hope that makes a bit of sense.


No, I am not going to list my pens here.

#3 loudkenny

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Posted 29 September 2013 - 05:20

I find that all the tech inventions that are supposed to be "labor saving devices" actually seem to make us even busier. It used to be that we couldn't be reached as soon as we left home or the office, so we had a chance to relax and think of or do other things. Nowadays, with smartphones and tablets all around us we can never ever truly disconnect from our work, so now we can and sometimes are expected to do 'work' wherever we are. This means real relaxation can be next to impossible.

 

It isn't that this time is any more 'real' than any past time, it's that we are all running at ever faster paces whether we want to or not. The mechanical watch, film camera, and fountain pen are all links to a slower, more pleasant, more relaxed time, a time where we didn't really have to rush. A time where our senses weren't constantly bombarded with bigger, faster, and louder. A time when we could go home, put our feet up, turn on the radio, pick up a book or newspaper, and tune out the evermore manic outside world for awhile.

 

I own a couple of preWWII watches along with my pens myself, but I don't consider myself a Luddite either. They just remind me to stop and smell the roses from time to time... that is if I still have the time.

 

ken


Edited by loudkenny, 29 September 2013 - 05:24.


#4 jetsam

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Posted 04 November 2013 - 12:01

"I want to wind them (mechanical watches) to know that time can indeed wind down..."
I think you express it very well.
I just want to feel more involved in what I'm doing rather than having some technological innovation take over from me.
Nibs on paper give me more control of my handwriting etc.. That's why ball point pens were forbidden to us in school.
It's just ironic that I'm communicating these thoughts on an iPad2 to virtual reality people (just like I am to you).

#5 Bo Bo Olson

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Posted 04 November 2013 - 12:53

I think a pocket watch says more than a wrist watch about the time for the user. A wrist watch is a flick of the wrist away from being compelled by time. A pocket watch is more like a pipe, a more deliberate process, especially in it has to be pulled out to be used.

 

One could say the same about a phone smarter than I am too, but it’s IMO different. A pocket watch cannot command me. Pavlov a dog is slobbered, ring a bell or answer the phone, if you want too or not.  

 

The problem with mechanical watches is you have to learn to oil them yourself or spend money. That can be a problem with old guts inside fountain pens too. Or it can be an expansion of the hobby.

 

Fountain pen nibs can give the user what he wants at that second in pattern and color. Paper defines that pattern with the ink. A search for a bit of beauty in a mundane world.

 

It matters less what I express to others than what I express to myself. I have to take the last step and slow down, slow way down and learn to draw letters in different styles. Take the time to write three words rather than five.


German vintage '50-70 semi-flex stubs and those in oblique give the real thing in On Demand line variation. Modern Oblique is a waste of money for a shadow of line variation. Being too lazy to Hunt for affordable vintage oblique pens, lets you 'hunt' for line variation instead of having it.

www.nibs.com/blog/nibster-writes/nibs-germany & https://www.peter-bo...cts/nib-systems,

 

The cheapest lessons are from those who learned expensive lessons. Ignorance is best for learning expensive lessons.

 

 

 


#6 jetsam

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Posted 04 November 2013 - 13:34

Maybe I'm just fooling myself and really looking back to a time when I wasn't on the wrong side of fifty (sixty).

#7 ArtsNibs

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Posted 04 November 2013 - 16:56

Personally I collect several types of things, including watches and pens: each area is relatively specific: I focus mainly on - but not exclusively Russian watches, and Chinese and Indian pens. Both kinds of instruments are of course functional, but unlike the majority of people who ask "what's the best watch I can get for $500" I am the type who look at them also as manifestations of the specific social, economical, and technical environments in which they were made, rather than looking at them as purely objects. In that sense they acquire an extra dimension that makes them a bit more "real", beyond just being mere objects that I can get easily at any high street shop. I hope that makes a bit of sense.

Very well said and insightful! That explains perfectly why I am just crazy about a certain model/year range of car - the "extra dimension". 


@arts_nibs

#8 LWJ2

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Posted 04 November 2013 - 19:16

I'm a weird collector, I use what I collect -- pens, pipes, tools, books. I write with them, smoke them, make things with them and read them. I'm more likely to buy a first edition of say, Fanny Farmer because of it's content, not the collector value or rarity. I want the information. If it's Jane's then I want the latest edition for the same reason.

 

Antique saws, for example. I buy them because of their handles. They fit the hand well. Granted, I'd love to swap out some of the blades for modern steel, it's simply better steel. But unless you buy a more-or-less bespoke handsaw these days (at $200+ US per) then you'll get a great blade with an ugly-looking handle that will raise silver-dollar sized blisters on your hand in less than five minutes use. Older pipes simply smoke better (and in my opinion look prettier) than most modern ones, it's the briar.

 

Then (sigh) there are pens. I've always had a fountain pen around, I learnt to write with a cheap school-kid's Sheaffer cartridge pen. Some time ago, whilst rooting about on a well-known internet sales site, I stumbled across Esterbrook pens. Remembering that my favourite uncle used an Esterbrook, I bought one, just as sort of a rememberance (the other favourite nephew got Harry's Estie, I got the pipes). That went downhill rapidly. Very rapidly. My Budget is frequently found in an alley, beaten, stabbed and shot up a few times. Books, pipes and tools, it seems, weren't enough damage. Budget is an extreme masochist.

 

Still, like the Highlanders at New Orleans, one carries on, pipes skirling, drums beating.



#9 Dickkooty2

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Posted 04 November 2013 - 19:55

"Still, like the Highlanders at New Orleans, one carries on, pipes skirling, drums beating."  The 93rd … 'The Thin Red Line'.

 

 

The spirit of the collector!







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