I usually avoid the smaller nineteen-fifties/sixties English Parkers. They’re excellent pens but the market for them is poor. This one’s a Slimfold, dating back to around 1962 and it looks like this one has done a lot of work since then. The gold plating’s still good, though. I suspect there may have been a cap swap at some time, though, because the cap seems a little darker than the barrel. The imprint is just discernible and no more. We’re not going to be exclaiming “Minty!” (awful term) or claiming New Old Stock over this one. No, it’s what it appears to be, someone’s old workhorse that has ended up on my bench.
The charm of this pen, though, is the nib. It’s an oblique stub. Parker didn’t do many of these but when they did, they gave them a sharp edge like an italic. This one’s a beauty. I have another with an oblique nib, an equally well-used Junior that is my current every-day user.
These smaller pens have gone out of fashion today. Everyone wants a pen that will do for a walking stick these days. Or perhaps provide compensation for physical shortcomings in another respect but I don’t know. And I’m not going there. The Slimfold, I must admit, is at the lower end of the pens I’m comfortable with for extended periods of writing, whereas the Junior is completely fine. As the arthritis proceeds (I’m not getting any younger, dammit!) I’ll graduate to a Demi and then a full Duofold, followed by a Senior and a Maxima. After that I’ll scratch messages in the sand with a stick and take photos of them.
Everybody likes red pens, and rightly so. I like them myself. Where they really come into their own is as the pen you use for red ink. It’s truly pernicious stuff. I spent over an hour today trying to rid a toffee-coloured Waterman Junior of red ink staining. Suffice it to say that I was not entirely successful. Never mind. Tomorrow’s another day.