I remember when my pencil / pen addiction began. It was in grammar school in the early 70’s. I saw that blue and white pen that had four sliding color switches around the top of the barrel; red, blue, black, and green. Four colors with a cool way of switching between them. I remember envying the kid who got one for their stocking stuffer. Regular pens with caps were bland and besides, the cap always got lost. But, I did get good at converting the tube pens with lost caps into paper wad shooters. A little puff of air and we could hit a classmate in the back of the head with a little wad of damp paper. Maybe this is why I enjoy Nerf darts to this day? But, that pen with four colors intrigued me. I loved the magic of it and the mechanical way it worked. Pentel puts out a fabulous dry highlighter with eight multiple colors that can be switched from one to another. I have been using one of them for at least ten years for classes and person study and just last month, in my small town on the Southern Oregon Coast, I found a red and black version of the four color mechanical pen with a comfort grip! You bet I bought it! I love to write with tools that delight me. It makes the craft fun and joyful. Don’t get me wrong, I love to write, but there is a giddy joy when acquiring a new tool to scribe my thoughts and stories upon the pages of unique journals or electronic devises.
The pencil that had my attention as a child was the plastic one that had about twelve leads in them, all sharp and all encased in a little plastic housing. As one dulled, I would pull it out from the bottom, push it back into the top of the pencil which then pushed out a fresh pointed lead to write with until it became dull and short. These pencils were colorful with either flowers, animals, or shapes decorating the plastic tubes. We also had to put an eraser caps on the end of it or use a cube eraser if needed. I finally got one around the fifth grade and thought it was the coolest thing. I used it proudly. The mechanical pencil with .05 or .07 retractable leads has since replaced that plastic pencil with the little lead pods, but I am always on the prowl for a writing tool that sparks a little joy in my heart.