Moving stationery


Case in ballpoint

Meimei, I see your point about finding exactly the right stationery. I have given up on this dream a very long time ago, around the time I graduated from university and started work as a medical house officer.

You see, I really do love gel-pens for writing. Gel-pens have a very fine bore and they do not tend to clot, which is perfect for doctor-scribble. It actually makes my chicken-stratchings-on-paper appear to be legible (note how I avoid saying that my handwriting is legible. It isn’t.)

However, as they are obviously highly sought after, gel-pens have a bad habit of…travelling. Into the hands of other medical staff. Usually other doctors. This is because nurses and pharmacists use coloured pens and tend to be too busy to go about nicking pens off the wards.

It is the pasttime of most doctors to trade pens with each other. I use the word ‘trade’ in the very broadest sense of the word, of course. What I mean is that doctors will pick and shed items of stationery all over the hospital. So my gel-pens would disappear for a few days, and then reappear, usually with most of the ink used up.

This is why I gave up buying lovely, lovely gel-pens for work. I depended on the kindness of passing drug-reps for my writing needs. Or, I would buy a bunch of really cheap ball-point pens and trade them for lost pens. That need a good home. In my pocket.

(P.S. All the best on your mid-terms!)


3 thoughts on “Moving stationery

  1. Reminds me of the first time my family visited South Africa. We had an Australian radiologist in the tour group. He bartered for every souvenir with pens. Then he would pull out a massive bag of med rep pens and count out the agreed number of pens.

    Fun times.

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