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Tuesday, December 11, 2007

I Heart My Bic.

The following are reviews from Amazon.co.uk for the omnipresent Bic pen... Enjoy! (Where else could you find a review for a ballpoint pen that makes reference to Cthulhu?)

28 of 32 people found the following review helpful:
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent pen! Some issues..., 10 Dec 2007
By Matthew R. Balousek (Chicago, IL USA) - See all my reviews
Upon receiving my order, I carefully opened the box and dug through the packing peanuts in order to get to the pen contained therein. 'Beautiful!', I thought, and promptly opened up my moleskine notebook to jot down to myself some notes. My previous pen had ran out of ink four weeks prior and I didn't want to splurge on expensive shipping, which meant I had a lot of notes to catch up on writing.

But, when that quality carbide ball touched the surface of the paper, it was not ink that came out. From a distance I heard the screams of men and the cackling of innumerable ravens. I stopped, cold and sweating profusely. I looked down at the Bic Crystal black medium ballpoint pen which I held in my hand, only to see darkness. I dashed it against the wall, recoiling in horror. I saw in the corner of my eye my faithful notebook, which now lay on the ground. Once unmarred, I saw now the small mark which I had made with the devil's own pen. It spread across the page like a plague, and looking at it I gazed upon true horrors. For, what I thought had been ink was in fact a portal to a dark, unforgiving dimension. A portal whose maw was now widening to engulf all hope and joy in the world.

'God, what have I done?' I exclaimed as I weeped and fell to my knees, 'What have I done?'

From beyond the Dark Gate I heard these words, words which I can never forget. A terrible, booming voice said to me, 'Ia! Ia! Cthulhu Fthagn!'

I ran, blindly stumbling, away from that place and never looked back. My only hope is that none shall follow in the path I've walked down, too blinded by hubris to realize my follies.

12 of 13 people found the following review helpful:
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect For Spooling Leftover Linguini (Brava, Bic!), 9 Dec 2007
Since 1994, I've been suffering from a mild form of obsessive-compulsive disorder that makes me hate (HATE) disorganization in my leftover pasta. I can't sleep knowing that tangles of spaghettini quietly choke each other, locked away in their tupperware world deep inside my fridge.

Just so you understand how much of a stickler I am: every picture frame in my house is level to within a .001% gradient (I readjust daily). You could eat off my floors - if I permitted such activity, which I don't, because, hello, eating off the floors messes up the very floors you're proudly boasting about in terms of their eat-offability. The television is always shut down on an even-numbered channel. There are no forks in my kitchen draws, they're all stored neatly in archive-quality envelopes in an adjoining room.

I am clearly someone who takes order seriously, and I do not skimp when it comes to the tools that stave off the ever-encroaching entropy of the universe. And I can conclusively declare that these pens are the PERFECT (the ***PERFECT***) thing to use for spooling cooked linguini for storage purposes. You'll find that one tightly rolled piece will fit precisely between top and cap. It's as if they made these things for that precise purpose! And for those who double spool, the plastic "grips" the first strand beautifully, so you can get a nice, even second outside spool.

One thing I'd definitely caution about: never spool just-cooked pasta on plastic. Melting is, of course, unlikely, but you'll find that a definite plastic taste will permeate your noodles if they're too hot. I find that cooling the pasta to somewhere between 85 and 90 degrees (I have a battery-powered handheld fan for this purpose) will result in a nice tight spool with no plasticky-aftertaste in the reheating.

Fortunately, the pens are cheap enough to buy in bulk. I don't happen to double spool, so I require several dozen to store a bowlful of cooked linguini. Your mileage, of course, may vary. But at this price, why not go for it?

8 of 23 people found the following review helpful:
2.0 out of 5 stars Ink Bath, 9 Dec 2007
By Argus Human Rights "sagacityfilms" (Denver, CO United States) - See all my reviews
Sure, this is a great pen if you want to take an ink bath.

I too was excited about my order of the Bic Crystal ballpoint pen, medium point, black. I had a lot of things to write and this pen seemed like it could really do the job, especially with its 2km write out length!

My package arrived (you're right, that was some good packaging. I even used the styrofoam peanuts with some paint and glue to make Christmas ornaments) and quickly tore into it. I laid out a sheet of my favorite paper (8 1/2" x 11" college ruled), yanked off the cap and thrust the pen towards the paper. Upon contact a small puddle of black ink formed. I wasn't too worried because it was only the initial flow and I felt it would subside. It did at first and the ink began to flow more evenly. Due to the adult nature of my writings I cannot here tell you the words I was forming with this pen but they were magical and for a brief moment the pen was magical too but suddenly and with complete indifference to my magic, the pen turned on me. My letters were getting fatter and the words becoming difficult to interpret. I decided to take a break and try again later so I firmly placed the cap back on and placed the pen in my pocket. In hindsight, I see this was a bad idea. I went about my day in my ordinary way. Later, while alphabetizing my spices I felt a wet sensation on my leg. I looked down and sure enough my pen was leaking in my pocket. I took it out and ink bled onto my fingers and dripped to the floor. Ultimately I got ink on my pants, shirt, hands and face. I'm still trying to get it off my face and feel so embarrassed I don't go out anymore. I really hope this tragedy doesn't befall anyone else. I hope my pen was just a bad apple.

829 of 835 people found the following review helpful:
4.0 out of 5 stars Very good if you need to write on paper, 7 Mar 2007
Since taking delivery of my pen I have been very happy with the quality of ink deposition on the various types of paper that I have used. On the first day when I excitedly unwrapped my pen (thanks for the high quality packaging Amazon!) I just couldn't contain my excitement and went around finding things to write on, like the shopping list on the notice board in our kitchen, the Post-it notes next to the phone, and on my favourite lined A4 pad at the side of my desk.

My pen is the transparent type with a blue lid. I selected this one in preference to the orange type because I like to be able to see how much ink I have left so that I can put in another order before I finally run out.

When the initial excitement of taking delivery of my new pen started to wear off I realised that I shouldn't just write for the fun of it, this should be a serious enterprise, so by the second day of ownership I started to take a little more care of what I wrote. I used it to sign three letters, and in each case was perfectly happy with the neatness of handwriting that I was able to achieve.

I have a helpful tip for you that you might not know about - if you let the ink dry for a few seconds you can avoid the smudging that sometimes happens if you rub the ink immediately after writing. Fortunately the ink used in this particular Bic pen seems to dry very quickly.

On the third day of ownership I went on a trip to London and took my pen carefully packed away in my brief case, but I needn't have worried, this isn't some temperamental ink pen that leaks when you store it at the wrong angle. I sat at my meeting and confidently removed the cap from my pen and it wrote flawlessly, almost immediately.

I notice that the barrel of the pen has been crafted very carefully to fit in the pen holder down the edge of my Filofax. It's not so grippy so that it is hard to remove when I want to make a quick note, and yet not so loose that it falls out too easily when I open my Filofax in a hurry. Maybe the choice of surface texture on the pen has some part to play here, because it seems that the inside of the leather grip on the pen holder in my Filofax has just the right level of adhesion that I can be confident when I need to reach in and get my pen it's going to be just where I left it!

Today is the fourth day of ownership of my pen, and I have to say I'm starting to treat it like an old friend. I walk around the office with it clipped in to my shirt pocket and someone in the accounts department actually asked to borrow it while we were both standing at the photocopier. Would you believe it, they actually tried to walk away with my pen! They were very embarrassed when I called after them as they walked down the corridor and asked for it back. You will be happy to know that it is now back, safe and sound in my top pocket, ready and waiting to start writing again.

In summary, I would happily recommend this pen to anyone who is planning on writing on paper. If you are considering a writing implement for some other surface such as writing on a CD, or other non-porous substances then another pen might be better suited, but if it's just plain old paper then I think you will probably be well served by this particular model.

1 comment:

mr.anonymous said...

lol bic reviews!
just summer it up into good pen/bad pen.