What was once a prized possession in the shirt pockets of a few is now diminishing. People writing with fountain pens aren’t as common as they used to be.
Fountain pen in school
When I was in school, there was a high regard for writing using a fountain pen. I started using a fountain pen in Year IV. Fountain pens were compulsory as they improved the handwriting and can boost the art of calligraphy.
Filling the ink into the pen was an art in itself. I had a separate cloth to wipe off the excess ink and a piece of chalk to absorb blotted ink while writing. The ink stains on the fingers at the end of a school day was a common sight.
The fountain pen today
Today a pen is used as a writing instrument. Gone are the days when if was compulsory for school children to write with fountain pens. Sadly today, many students don’t know how to use a fountain pen while others have not even seen one. A ballpoint pen is cheap, convenient and easy to use.
Go into a shop and ask for a fountain pen and the shopkeeper will look at you as though you are a dinosaur.
The fountain pen is considered as a collector’s item and as a status symbol. Luxury brands like Mont Blanc and Waterman have a niche market and not meant for the common man.