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  1. Looking for suggestions: What do you think are the best fountain pens that can hide in plain sight at an office? Something that writes smoothly, but isn't flashy or call too much attention to itself as a fountain pen? Something that doesn't look expensive, but still functions well? Something that looks kind of average? Something that can be used at an open-plan office, then be left in a pen cup on a desk (mixed with other standard issue ballpoints, etc.)? Dark colored, not-blingy bodies would be best for this. Disposables, like the Pilot Varsity, are good office options, but I'd like something refillable. Bonus points for: -Ink window -XF nib Pens that come to mind: Jinhao 991 and 992 Parker Vector Others?
  2. Ink Tests for the Common Office - Sailor Jentle Tokiwa-Matsu Today in my Ink Tests for the Common Office series I am reviewing Sailor Jentle Tokiwa-Matsu, aka Pine Green. When I received this ink in my latest sample-haul, this was the first one I grabbed. I sincerely doubted that I would have cause to use a green ink in the office for anything other than corrections, and only having three pens, I did not think that I would be using it much until my collection inevitably grows. So without further ado, let’s move on to pictures! Chromatography There is a whole lot going on here, from teal-blue, sky-blue, pine-green, a light burnt-umber, and pale-yellow. It's definitely a pretty combo. White-Copy Paper I am beginning to realize that sheen is very, very rarely going to happen on standard office paper. Honestly, that's okay, because for work I don't want too-too much going on to draw attention to the fact that this is neither blue or black. It is slightly on the wetter side of things, and does feather and bleed-through, just slightly less than Namiki Black. As long as you don't swipe/drop water all over the page, or smear the ink, you probably wouldn't notice, at first, that the ink is not an office-standard color. Because of how wet the ink is, I would not recommend this for two-sided documents on standard Staples white copy. As with my previous review, alcohol was not available. Bleach caused the ink to almost disappear, except for the barest of yellow remnants. Photocopy Pursuant to the recommendation of namrehsnoom, I am including an image of what the ink looks like after photocopying. It is interesting to note that smearing and water damage didn't seem to show up much, if at all. If one were able to mop up a spilled drink quickly enough, a b/w photocopy of the document would probably look just fine. This gets me thinking...maybe I should add Dr. Pepper or coffee reaction tests in the future...hmmm. Moving on. Longer Writing Sample - White Copy Yellow Legal Pad In longer writing samples, the bleed-through and show-through start becoming more noticeable, but so does the shading. There was no bleed-through on the Staples yellow legal pad, which is really starting to impress me for cheap paper. Because the yellow paper doesn't suck up the ink as much, smearing was much more prevalent. Staples Copy Shading Yellow Pad Shading Even on cheap paper, the shading shows up, although it is not super noticeable. Final Thoughts: Surprisingly, I feel comfortable using this ink in the office. I would not use this ink for signing my name, however, as water and bleach can mess with longevity too much. And, while I would certainly use this ink for notes on the legal pad, and possibly corrections, I would not use this on any two-sided documents (which, lucky for me, are anathema in my office). If you like more reserved greens, or just want to rebel in inconspicuous ways, I think you might want to give this ink a shot. For this review I used a Xerox 3220 Scanner set to Color at 300dpi, an iPhone 7s back-camera with no filters and set to large, a Brother MFC 8810DW photocopier, and some beautiful, industrial florescent lighting, as one would most often find in these circumstances. Disclaimer: I received this sample from Anderson Pens at my own expense. I am not being compensated for this review, or sponsored in any way. Colors may appear differently on different screens. The images and opinions in this post are mine and mine alone.
  3. Good day. A quick query: I'm sure many of you enjoy having a tidy desk and also having your regular/common/(inexpensive/everyday stationery handy. Maybe you would like to share a picture of what's going on on your desk, or in your office or home. Here's mine; I have... - a glass that's just pencils, - one for scissors etc., - an empty one (save for some plastic) for the FP of the day (They reside inside a sleeve in the top drawer), - and a big one for whiteout, protractor, (spoon?) etc. - There's also a bottle I still need to clean out, decorate, and fill with paperclips. Lastly, everything is decorated with leftover paper, and collected stamps. Oh and one very nice, user-grade Estie (Copper/9556/Sailor Black), that's allowed to stay right there.
  4. My colleagues are used to my fountain pen habit. Some have even picked up one of their own. And everybody knows not to ask me for a pen if what they want is a biro. So usually, I don't think about it. Nothing unusual going on here, many of us like nice pens, let's get on with our working day, and that's that. This afternoon, my secretary started screaming. She recovered a little and shouted "GET THE FIRST AID KIT!" down the corridor. People came to the door, stopped as soon as they got there, and started making sharp intakes of breath. I thought someone was grievously injured. And then I realised it was me. I've just bought a "new" (to me) Waterman 53. I'd filled it the night before; what I hadn't realised was that the nib wasn't set properly. When I uncapped there was a fair bit of ink in the cap, and it blobbed straight from the nib all over the page when I first started using it, so I put it to one side. Turns out that starting it led to it leaking like...a severed artery. All the ink in the reservoir evacuated in one go (I wish I understood the physics of this - it was very impressive). I hadn't realised, but there was a pool of Diamine Oxblood all over the desk and many of my books - and worst of all, my dress and cardigan were soaking it all up from one wrist, making me look as if I'd been busy trying to end it all over some lousy Christmas results. Turns out that there's nothing in the world that looks more like fresh blood than fresh Oxblood. At least this is what my colleagues thought, and my secretary had to be stopped from calling an ambulance; in retrospect "It's not blood! It's ink! Smell it!" may not have been the most considered response. I have had to do a lot of mopping. I am taking my secretary out for dinner tomorrow and buying her a box of chocolates (we are both married women, so this is not inappropriate) to apologise for nearly giving her a heart attack. I have ruined some new notebooks, some old reference books, a load of papers for work and the diary refill I was working on. It is all over the office carpet. There is, for some reason, some up one of the walls about eight feet from my desk. I can't understand how one tiny rubber sac of ink managed to spread so far, so fast. (No jokes about "Who would have thought the old pen to have so much ink in him?", please.) I need to buy a bottle of wine for the cleaner.
  5. I usually write my notes, letters etc. on blank A4 office paper... Right now I have a pack of them from an unnamed company and it is terrible for fountain pens, the nibs drag along it and the line feathers (or, more precisely, becomes bolder than on better papers), while I am using well-behaved inks (Diamine, Quink Blue, Sailor Epinard). I would like to buy a new pack, and here comes the question – is there anyone from Europe who would have experience with such papers being friendly to fountain pens, could you give me some suggestions? I think the paper brands shouldn't be too different from state to state. Thanks in advance!

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