Monday, August 05, 2013


On the train to Amsterdam, my daughter wants to know if I have a pen. I am sure I do. I try to remember always to have one, better two, in case the first one runs out of ink. Or clogs. Or fails to glide nicely. 

On trains and planes, the worst thing is to have no pen. It's worse than not having a book.

It is as if you were ill and the cure was locked up in a closet you’d only get open when your suffering was over. It is as if you’d lost your country. 

While any one pen carries a risk, the iffier bet is the pencil. The point breaks off in your purse, or grows knob-like and dull, so that in addition to having a pencil, you must make sure to have a pocket knife. We know a pocket knife isn’t welcome everywhere. 

In any case, on the train my daughter asks if I have a pen. Sometimes even though I’m certain I do, I don’t. But on the train I do.


Andrew Shields said...

Pentel 0.5 mm mechanical pencils in my case. For almost 40 years now!

Ron. said...

Sometimes, when My Beloved Sandra (or anyone else who's known me for any length of time) asks if I have a pen, I can only stare at them in disbelief, wondering if they have any idea as to whom they are addressing.

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