Posted 23 December 2018 - 02:05 PM
I usually carry three pens, sometimes four. The first one is a Faber-Castell I keep in a Bellroy notebook sleeve at all times. I pretty much always have that combination on me unless I'm sleeping. Reason: fits the Bellroy perfectly due to girth and clip position, large ink tank, looks nice. That's used mostly for quick notes and interviews.
Second one is a Caran d’Ache fountain pen that resides with my desktop work journal. I enjoy writing with fountain pens but they aren’t really practical in the field. I pack it when I need to talk to more traditionally-minded people. Lessens friction, but can be a conversation opener for pretty much everybody. I have forgotten how often I’ve heard “oh, you still use one of those things?” at the beginning of an interview even with 20 years old protesters, which breaks the ice nicely.
Third and fourth ones are my backups, Caran d’Ache 849 ballpoint pens. Those are like the baseline, I don’t use any other replacement pens to the ones mentioned above if I can help it. Realistically, I should probably drop both the fountain pen and the Faber-Castell ballpoint for more 849. Inexpensive (here in Switzerland), and you could probably hack yourself out of a prison made of ice blocks, then keep on writing, then stab your dinner, then write some, then clean out an air duct or something, then write some more. Exceptional pens.
I’m a reporter, so yeah, I need pens around me at all times. I probably could do my job with only 849s easily, but I like to have tone-up, tone-down options with the other pens. It’s what sometimes makes or breaks a job. For the Zombie apocalypse, though, I’d probably pack six 849. You could even pitch a tent with those things.