You know the ones, those Swiss Army pens that combine writing instruments, tools and toys into one cool little piece that are always fun to play with, even though they may not be practical for the workaday world. Whether it's a multi-pen with three different inks and a pencil, or an engineer's pen with calipers and a ballpoint, we find them fascinating.
And we can usually count on Yochanan at the Multi Pen Dimensions blog to keep us entertained with exactly those kinds of pens.
Multi Pens is a fairly new blog – launched in May – and has already become essential reading for Yochanan's experiments with a wide assortment of offbeat pens. He tracks down unusual pens, test-drives them and then presents his readers with his recommendations in succinct, well-organized reviews.
He found the Rotring Trio Silver Multi Pen to be a pale imitation of earlier versions; recommended the look and feel of the lightweight, ergonomic Fjader Capped Black Chrome ballpoint pen, but not the washed-out ink; and introduced the Ultimate Geek Pen, complete with laser pointer, UV light and ballpoint.
As much as we enjoy his blog, we wanted to share it with the rest of you. Yochanan was kind enough to do a brief interview for us, describing his love of pens and how it got started.
Q: How did you become interested in pens?
A: I have always had a thing for pens. They have in some way represented a source of expression which was always accessible. I cannot remember not carrying a pen around with me. It continues to be an extra "appendage" if you will.
Q: What led you to focus on multi-pens?
A: The Multi Pen fascination came early on. In school my friends and I would compare our pen's versatility. So we each sought to find a Multi Pen that had more colors than the next guy. I remember having one pen that had six colors, and was made of white plastic material. I think it costs several dollars that I saved up in order to purchase. It met an untimely demise and was stolen.
Later on I rekindled that fascination when I found a Pilot multi pen in Saudi Arabia back in 1990. It was a three color pen made from brass and aluminum. I really enjoyed its company for a long while. I don't know what happened to it, and Pilot no longer makes this model. So in some ways, I continued searching for this pen, or one similar.
Q: How long have you been blogging about pens?
A: I'm fairly new at blogging, having started Multi Pen Dimensions back in May of this year. I just felt like I needed to express this passion about these fascinating writing implements that are out there. I also blog on other pens of interest that are unusual in nature. But it's the "Multi Pen" that really grabs my attention the most.
Q: What are some of your most popular posts so far?
A: Being a huge fan of Lamy Pens, I really love discussing the Lamy Accent 4 in 1. When I purchased this pen about eight years ago, it was the most expensive pen in my collection at the time. But when I started using it, I forgot all about the cost, because the pen felt just so right in my hand. So when I posted on it, I speak of its sensual feeling when holding it and inking on paper. It is just a solid performer.
Q: What pens do you use the most often?
A: Well, I really try giving my pens equal playing time, but some stars are on the field more than others. My Fisher Space Pen, Matte Black with clip is my workhorse. I've had these pens for over 13 years. They're so small that I'll misplace or lose one and immediately get another to replace it. It's just that good of a performer. My Lamy Logo Tri Pen also gets major playing time.
Q: What's the most interesting thing that's happened to you because of your blog?
A: Just the people from around the globe who email and ask me to review this pen or that pen, and give their sense of passion about a certain pen. Its so fascinating to know there is a whole community of pen affecianados out there.
Q: How many pens do you have in your collection?
A: I actually have two collections of writing instruments. One is not physically with me in my current locale. I would say in the neighborhood of 85.
Q: Do you use pens mostly for drawing, personal writing, or work?
A: Journaling, and work. Also woodwork. My Messograf Caliper is a workhorse in that environment, as well as my Multi 4 in 1 Level Pen. They are invaluable tools in the workshop.
Yochanan went on to say, "I really have a passion for writing and for the implements used to produce the written word. I am of the belief that you need the right writing implement to do the right job. Multi Pens come in a wide variety of functions, and they really are exciting to use. I think I will always have an affinity for their utilitarian nature."
If you haven't seen his blog yet, we recommend that you stop by and check it out. If you see something you like, let Yochanan know you appreciate his work.