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Fun Stuff

  • Enter Our Handwriting Contest and Win Free Swag!

    Readers, we promised you a treat, and this is it: The Tiger Pens blog is holding a handwriting contest and giving away cool prizes to the people with the best scribbles.

    CursiveWe've been talking a lot about handwriting lately (after all, good writing is the flip side of collecting good pens). So, now we want to see yours. All you have to do is send us a sample between now and November 21 for a chance to earn fame and glory – and something free, just in time for Christmas. Continue reading

  • Cool Stuff Coming Up

    Readers, we at the Tiger Pens Blog have something special in mind for you – and it will involve giving away some free stuff. We'll be making the announcement very soon, so keep an eye out for it.

  • Tactical Pens - For Those Really Tough Writing Assignments

    Anyone who thinks that ink pens aren’t for tough guys obviously has never seen a tactical pen.

    They’re writing instruments equally useful for jotting down grocery lists or doing battle in the back alleys of  Bangkok. Really – pens specifically made to be used in street fights.

    Odd as it may seem, there are a handful of companies that take seriously the whole “pen is mightier than the sword” thing. As the makers of the Tuff-Writer put it on their website:

    Q: Why do I need a tactical/defense pen?

    A: Because it's a dangerous world out there and the price of being unprepared is just too high. Continue reading

  • What is Your Favourite Pen?

    What makes for a favourite pen, one of those that you’ll guard jealously and use often for years and years? Is it a comfortable grip, a smooth writing experience, brilliant colours, a sexy shape? Maybe all of the above?

    Whatever it is, we each have that one pen that is just right for us, that fits our hand perfectly, that makes clean, beautiful lines and turns our handwriting into a work of art (at least in our own eyes). Well, some have that pen, anyway, and some are still searching.

    Here at the Tiger Pens blog, we’re always interested in favourite pens.

    Lamy SafariThat’s why this great post at Lifehacker, showcasing readers’ favourite pens, caught our eyes recently.

    Not surprisingly, fountain pens were well-represented on the list, from the Lamy Safari to the Namiki Yukari. Also included:

    That got us wondering about our favourites around here, so we took a quick poll of the Tiger Pens team to find out what we’re using and why. This is what everyone had to say:

    Bob, accounts and administration

    Uses a Sheaffer NoNonsense fountain pen that he has had for more than a dozen years. He says it’s “very comfortable to hold and the nib suits my writing style.” Bob uses it for all of his everyday tasks and when he wants to impress. Unfortunately, Sheaffer no longer makes the old-style NoNonsense, so if anything ever happened to his pen, he’d have to go searching for a new one on eBay.

    Alex, webmaster

    Writes with a Sharpie Pen that he bought just a few weeks after they were first released. He said, “It can write on literally anything, how much cooler can you get? Its portable and guaranteed to work!” His Sharpie gets put to use for “anything that comes in my mind then and there, from jotting down a quick note on the go (it’s attached to my keys) to marking a wall where it needs to be drilled.”

    Sharpie Pen

    Pete, managing director

    Totally old-school with a vintage Parker 51 from the 1950’s that he’s had for about four months. He loves his Parker because, “It is the first fountain pen that I have bought, and I believe that it makes my letters appear more personal when written using my fountain pen.” Pete uses his mostly for writing and signing letters. If he ever lost it, Pete says he wouldn’t “cry over spilt milk” and might try a Pilot Vanishing Point instead because he's heard they're good pens, and he likes that they're retractable.

    TonyB, blogger

    That’s me. I use a Bic XXL that I’ve had for six months to a year (I can’t remember when I got it, but as with most of my pens, I suspect it was nicked from someone else). The pen simply is the most comfortable I’ve ever come across because the barrel is thick and round, and the grip is a nice, soft cushion of foam. I use it for everything, from taking notes to making grocery lists. Unfortunately, it’s not a smooth writer (actually kind of scratchy) so I’m still on the lookout for a favourite pen. In the meantime, I’m trying out my new UGLee Pen as a replacement desk pen.

    Bic_XXL

    UGLee Pen

    What about you? What is your favourite pen and why? Let us know, and be sure to include a good description, or a photo if you can, and we may feature it in a future article.

  • 9 Unusual Pens

    We love pens, but sometimes, really, they can take themselves far too seriously.

    So, once in a while, we have to search out those pens that are just silly or geeky or made for people whose lives apparently are much more adventurous than our own. The only criterion is that they must be pens you can actually use, besides being unusual in some way, of course.

    This time around, we found nine such pens, each one ugly, awkward and fun in its own way. Or so we think, anyway. Continue reading

  • What Kind of Pen Does Stephen Colbert Use? We Know

    Apparently, there’s some question about what kind of pen mock conservative Stephen Colbert uses on his Comedy Central show, The Colbert Report.

    Speculation on an older pen blog post and earlier this year on the show’s message board was that he uses the Uni-ball Signo Premier 207, or maybe a blue Pilot Dr. Grip. Those both are good guesses, especially the Signo, because the pen he normally waves around during the show looks very much like the popular Uni-ball model. Continue reading

  • When Writing Gets Dull, Try Pen Spinning

    And here we thought pens were just for writing. Turns out, there’s another use.

    Pen spinning is the art, or at least hobby, of “contact juggling” with either a normal ink pen or one that’s been specially modified to make it easier to manipulate. Spinners do exactly what the name implies – rotate pens as fast as possible around, between and across their fingers and hands.

    Make no mistake, this is the not the idle pen twirling you see around the office when people are bored. Check out this amazing video that shows what pen spinning looks like, courtesy of Kam at UPSB.

    embedded video:

    Of course, this should come as no surprise. For every known object in existence, there is someone who is going to figure out how to do tricks with it. And it stands to reason, as much time as people spend with pens in their hands, someone would find a way to become insanely good at those tricks.

    Pen spinning usually is done with what spinners call “mods.” These are an amalgamation of pen parts taking bodies from one kind, caps from another, tips from yet one more, and grips from still another. The most popular mod involves combining a Pentel Hybrid Gel Grip with a Pentel RSVP to create what is known among spinners as the RSVP MX.

    Japanese toy company Takara Tomy Corp. has even created a specially weighted and balanced pen for pen spinners called Pen’z Gear.

    As it has become more popular, pen spinning has grown into a very defined activity with universally known tricks like the Charge, the Sonic and the ThumbAround and organised communities around the world, from Japan to Switzerland.

    And now, there’s an annual competition called, naturally, the World Cup. Spinners form into teams and submit videos of themselves with their pens. Their performances are judged against their competitors and the winners advance round by round to the finals.

    Spinnerpeem of the Thailand Pen Spinning Community took the 2009 World Cup in May. Wait until you see the video…you’ll swear he has no bones in his hands.

    We’re hoping that these pen spinners all are employed as surgeons and jet pilots and concert pianists, where their brilliant dexterity can benefit the rest of us.

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