Monday, February 20, 2012


When I set out to write a blog post a day and laid out thetopics I was going to try to address on a semi-regular basis, I intentionally gave the week day posts subjects that I thought could be handled with very short prose.  To help myself actually achieve my goal, I was going to take the nights that was typically I buried in real, paying work and only do a post for the blog that required minimum time, thought, and verbiage.   The problem that I realized as I was typing out a third paragraph on the subliminal meaning of the baby blue color of Genome Quebec’s free pen is that I have a real problem with being succinct.  I appear to be so in love with my own words that I can’t seem to stop typing them, even when I know I have more important things to do.  Either that or I just decided not to type them at all because I know I won’t be able to limit myself.  But now that I have engaged in this bit of introspection, I am going to pledge to be a better, more concise man going forward.  Monday through Thursday.  Unless of course I have something really, really important to say about the role of free promotional pens in struggles of an oppressed people and their drive to achieve self determination.  I wouldn’t want to rob the world of that brilliant geopolitical analysis just so I can post another web-only add for Bio-Rad

Now, the newly condensed Pen of the Week review.

Company –, website for the hotel giant.

Color – 7 - Black and Silver.  Classy colors gives you the feeling of seriousness and formalness.  Like a pen wearing a tux.   Yet it certainly doesn’t catch your eye.  Never find this in a dark room.  Hard to find when it gets knocked of the table and under the bed.

Tip Ejection – 2 – This pen ejects the tip by twisting the pen.  Once ejected, the pen does not solidly lock into this position.  So the tip could easily withdrawal unexpectedly.  Could have disastrous results if your life depends on writing out the first line of the Declaration of Independence in cursive in under 10 seconds.

Quality of Construction – 1 - Light weight and made of cheap plastic.  Pocket clip is also weak.  Would clearly break off if once you start playing with it during a particularly boring meeting.

Design – 0 - Couldn’t be more basic.  Hyatt went to the promotion pen store and asked for the cheapest pen they have.  Said stick our name on that one.

Writing – 7 – Tested the writing on standard paper on a hard surface.  Ink immediately came out without any pre-scribbling and tip banging.  Once going, wrote smoothly without any breaks in the ink.  Would be willing to use this pen to write my 8th grade essay on the birth of communism in Eastern Europe.

Grip – 3 – Very thin pen.  About the diameter of your average pencil.  No ergonomic enhancements so doesn’t fit in your hand any better or more comfortably than your average number 2.  Because it lacks any heft, you have to do all the work of pushing it on to the paper.  I got pen pushes your hand down on the paper.

Overall Score – 1 – They didn’t even try.  Given this is a hotel pen, it is not surprising they went with the cheapest possible promotional pen.  They expect you to steal it and promptly loss it on the airplane home.  Still this is not a pen you want to stand for your brand.  

This blog post was sponsored by the Primatech Paper Company.