It has been a busy week for me with hardly a day at home, hence the paucity of posts. Nonetheless, there have been a few interesting things, some, at least, of which I hope to write about in the coming days. There’s a very early Fattorini piston filler – you don’t come across one of them every day! A delightful Wahl metal-bodied pen found its way to my bench and so did a 1920s De La Rue pen, as fresh as the day it was made, with chasing so sharp it would cut you.
In eBay this very day there’s a 1940s/50s English Waterman button-filler. Yes, that’s right. A Waterman button-filler! Such things are rarely seen. I had a mind to buy it but I think it’s going beyond my reach. Bear in mind that I at least have to get my money back to carry on, and the rarest of rare pens aren’t always the ones to make the money, especially when they’re rare enough that most people don’t know they exist. It’s the scarce-but-sought-after pens that make squillions.
Despite having been around for a few decades, there are signs that our hobby has yet to get beyond its mewling and puking infancy. There was a thread about the meaning of the word “vintage” with reference to pens in FPN this week. The standard of debate was such that I fear it will be a generation or two yet before our hobby is able to develop universally-agreed standards, and it will remain all the poorer for that. It is true that the worst elements of earlier years have been driven out, mainly by eBay’s presence establishing prices that reflect value a little better than those prevalent before it was around, but we still have a long way to go. A glance at the more mature hobbies like veteran and vintage motor-cars, numismatics and philately show where we might be some day.