Certified Water Technologist #63

Certified Water Technologist #63
Vern's Stories fredhorn37@gmail.com An expert is someone who knows each time more on each time less, until he finally knows absolutely everything about absolutely nothing.

A Nice Ballpoint Pen

 Back about 3 decades ago, when I first started working for the water treatment chemical company, my employer would frequently talk about a certain ballpoint pen he would like to have. He thought it was a symbol to have one of these very expensive ballpoint pens. At that time I think they might have been around $300.00. I don't remember the brand, and I don't remember if he ever got one.

But I do remember that he liked for himself and his employees to present a nice appearance. I didn't wear a tie here locally, but I did at the main office. But I was always dressed, I guess you would say professionally.  And I have to admit that the way we dressed in those days to go out and approach the public at the places we would sell to, worked. Some years later he dialed down the dress code a bit, and provided us with logo shirts to wear. They were okay, but it wasn't quite the same after that, at least to me. Frankly, I kind of miss those days.

Anyway, back to the ballpoint pen. I was not able to afford one of those pens at the time, but I decided I would like something a little nicer than one of the plastic bic pens I was using.

So, one day I was in Target store, and I started browsing the ballpoint pen section looking for a relatively nice pen. And lo and behold, they had a pretty nice looking stainless steel ballpoint pen made by Parker. I tried to insert an image here but I can't get it to co-operate.

It is a smooth stainless steel pen, looks very nice in just about any setting. So I bought it and it cost me $5.00. Next year I bought another, next year another, and finally they got up to about $11 and then Target quit carrying that model.

Anyway, one of my responsibilities was to analyze the chemicals in the boiler water for the customer, and write a service report and get the customer to sign it, and leave them a copy.

So this one customer, my contact was this girl named Kathy. She was about 6' 4" tall, I shit you not. And skinny.

I brought her the service report, laid it on the desk in front of her, placed my $5.00 ballpoint pen and asked her to sign it. She did then she looked at me and said, "That's a nice pen." I said yes it was and went to take back my pen. Again, she said "That's a nice pen." And again I said yes it is. After one more time of her saying thats a nice pen, it hit me. That was her way of asking if she could have the pen.

So I gave her my ballpoint pen, and had to go back to using bic pens. Last year I found an old briefcase of mine and started scrounging thru the thing, and I found one of those pens. And it still works! Will wonders never cease!



10 comments:

  1. I remember dressing well for work. I would bicycle 7 miles (in Houston that's not a lot of far, but a buttload of hot), strigil off, and swap into a suit and tie. Kept a couple ratty sets of coveralls for when I had to fill in on the fab floor, which was most days. I mean, I could have written it up, done some drawings, translated it into Spanish, waited a week, and then sent it back because the corners weren't radiused. Or I could do it myself in 20 minutes.

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    1. Fortunately the job I was in never required that type of supervision, as I was a one man show. But I would frequently do the customers job of replacing empty drums, waiting on them to do it might never happen.

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  2. After the third time of "That's a nice pen", in a perfect world, I would have responded "A blow job would be nice, too".

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  3. I have always been a fan of the Fisher Space pen, as they can write upside down, and when capped, fit easily into a jeans pocket..without damaging the jewels.
    I liked the Paper Mate (no longer made) vintage pens, and lost many to customers.

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    1. Todays world of pens is like everything else, no great form, no great fashion. Every thing is kind of blase.

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  4. Whenever I came across a really nic pen it would disappear into the Wifes purse. Then she would leave it somewhere.

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    1. I tried to buy my wife a really nice pen and pencil set, but she would never use it.

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  5. "That's a nice pen." three times, really Fred? She liked you, wanted you and you didn't rise to the bait! 6'4", skinny? A ride of your life too! Most men are too intimidated and fearful of tall women. I found out early life about tall girls, kind of like pious Catholic girls...

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    1. I know, I was kind of dense back then. More dense now.

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