Pencil prank & Pelikan

I couldn’t help but notice the pencil on the cover of the latest Beano issue. Well, I say the latest issue, when actually it was four issues ago because my son’s subscription is slow to arrive here on the continent. At least you can still subscribe to The Beano here. The Phoenix stopped their subscription to EU countries altogether because of issues with delayed and missing deliveries and they don’t offer a digital subscription either.

In case you’re wondering what the pencil prank is, have a look here:

On a different note: registration for the Pelikan Hub 2024 is open. You can register here:

I hope to be able to run a Pelikan Hub again. As I am more familiar with my ‘new’ city, I have a better idea for the location this year.

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Posh pens in a supermarket

Most of us only know the really expensive fountain pens [1]Not sure where to draw the line here. Maybe at €200 plus? from the Internet. No wonder – unless you live in a very big city or close to a specialist stationery store you probably don’t have much chance of seeing them in real life. It’s understandable that many shops don’t stock really expensive pens: they might not sell, so would end up just tying up money that could be used to buy other goods that sell faster.

I am wondering if shops with enough turnover can sell expensive pens on commission / don’t have to pay for them until they sell them. If you know how this works, please leave a comment. The fact that you don’t see expensive pens often makes me think that this is not the case.

With this in mind it came as a surprise to see not one, but three €2,000 fountain pens at a supermarket in Bremen. OK, I admit, that it is not a normal supermarket, but a rather unusual one: It is not part of any of the common German supermarket chains and there is only branch, i.e. it is not its own chain. It’s called Lestra and is a normal, but posh, supermarket that sells milk, bread, butter, cheese, meat – and has a small but very special stationery aisle.

In the top row of the shelf in the next photo you can see Pelikan’s Silver Screen fountain pen (€1,950) from 2009 (limited edition of 420 pens), Pelikan’s Herzstück fountain pen (€2,500) from 2019 (limited edition of 462 pens) and Pelikan’s Temple of Artemis fountain pen (€2,750) that is part of the Seven Wonders Of The World Series and was released in 2006 (limited edition of 440 pens).

As you can imagine this was a very unexpected discovery. Next time I visit I’ll look what other unusual items are there to be discovered.


1 Not sure where to draw the line here. Maybe at €200 plus?

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Pelikan Hub Bremen

After recently moving from the UK to Germany, this year I was involved in the Pelikan Hub Bremen, rather than the Preston Hub that used to be my home hub.

The Pelikan Hub took place in a Greek restaurant in the North of Bremen. The location was chosen as it was close to public transport and also offered a big car park.

Some numbers linked this Hub: Unfortunately, three of the participants who signed up didn’t take part. There were also another three people who didn’t sign up but wanted to come along. In the end, however, they couldn’t make it. That left us with five participants which means that this was probably one of the smallest Hubs…

Despite the small number of participants I enjoyed the Hub very much. I wonder how long other Hubs went on for. This one lasted around four hours.

Thanks to Pelikan the participants got bottles of the ink of the year, nice notebooks and postcards.

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A Traditional year of the mouse

Coincidentally coinciding with Chinese New Year: a new addition to my Pelikan flock.

I couldn’t resist CultPen’s Pelikan discount offer and bought the ‘Traditional M120’. Upon arrival I filled it with Diamine Prussian Blue.

When I showed it to my wife, who usually loves Pelikan (except that blue M205 demonstrator I got in 2009), she compared the looks of the M120 to a Super5 and commented on the price.

When I ordered the M120 I didn’t think of the Super5 at all. Now that I made the connection it is so clear. Yes, they are similar, but putting them next to each other you realise how similar they are.

The colour of the M120 is beautiful, but the Super5 colours are beautiful as well. Pelikan and Super5 managed to find special colours that are the opposite of boring.

The Super5 is much cheaper, so unlike the Pelikan you don’t mind using it all the time. You don’t feel you have to protect it from scratches and the bad world out there. It takes cartridges – unlike the Pelikan which is a piston filler which always feels more high end. The Super5 is also special in a way: it is available without an Iridium point which makes for a nice and different writing experience.

Happy New Year of the Mouse to all Bleistift Readers. Enjoy your pens.

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Highway to pen

It’s always nice to drive through Belgium as it gives me a chance to refill my Atoma reserves. As you might know, I’m a big fan of Atoma notebooks.

Stationery in a Carrefour Hypermarket

With such a choice to tempt me (see photo above) I couldn’t resist getting a BIC multi-pen with a pencil to add to my multi-pen plus pencil collection.

BIC in Belgium

Carrefour had an offer on the Pelikano junior for under €10. It’s a great pen. When I bought mine in 2008 I paid £6.80, but these prices are long gone and today €10 seems like a steal.

Pelikano junior, probably bigger in Japan than in Europe

The reason I really stopped was to get more Atoma notebooks. Unfortunately they didn’t have the Bio Atoma which I love. Even Atomas with cardboard covers were rare. Most had thick plastic covers which seem unnecessarily plasticy and not as nice as the cardboard variety. The similar Adoc notebooks were however available with cardboard covers.

No Bio Atomas. Sniff.

When I drove on, into Germany, I noticed another nice stationery surprise. Kids get the excellent Noris colour pencils with a kids meal. Chicken fillets, fries, orange juice and Staedtler Noris for €3.99. The Noris is certainly the star in this combo.

I wish I was a kid

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