Growing up in a military family, I just took for granted the ubiquitous Skilcraft ball-point pen. They were practically the only pens in the house. They’re what I wrote (and wrote and wrote) with as a student. They wouldn’t quit and they took the beating of the backpack in stride. Only when I branched out on my own did I realize that these pens weren’t everywhere.
So I greeted the Washington Post‘s appreciation of the Skilcraft pen (“Low-tech Skilcraft pens endure in a high-tech world“, Ylan Q. Mui, Sunday, April 18, 2010, A1) with delight:
For more than 40 years, standard black pens have cluttered the desks of thousands of federal employees, hung on a chain at post offices across the country and slipped into the pockets of countless military personnel. Yet few have realized that this government-issue pen has a history to rival that of any monument.
I might need to order some of these. While I’m very much a thin-point plastic tip user (Pilot Razor Point for life!), sometimes you need a ball point pen, and these are the best around: a classic design paired with legendary writing endurance.
(Image from the AbilityOne Catalog).