Miss Being Tactile? Is There An App For That?


April 27, 2012

Conway Stewart Chatsworth Collection Fountain Pen

*from the dusty archives…

CBS Sunday Morning had an intriguing story about pens.  Not the disposable pens you pick up at CVS or Walgreens for a couple dollars, but beautiful, hand-crafted fountain pens.  The story detailed quality pens and the popularity of collecting them.  The issue comes when a pen is damaged because there are almost no craftsmen left who repair pens.  One man, Richard Binder, known as “The Pen Doctor” is changing that.  He was a developer of high-tech computer software and gave that up to use his skill at repair and crafting fountain pens.  Taking on the art of re-crafting these pen tips is turning a once lost job into a busy, profitable career for Richard.

We live in such a fast-paced world, I wonder if more and  more people are missing being tactile. We walk around with our smart phones in our faces, texting, tweeting, and updating our FaceBook sites.  We have voice mail, DVR, video games to help us exercise, and technology in almost every aspect of our lives.  I’m as guilty of this as anyone.  But, like the Pen Doctor, I am finding that I miss being tactile.

I miss the days of writing everything in my life down in my Franklin Planner.  I miss the need to go to a library once in awhile and use the old card catalog to find a book.  The feeling of flipping those little cards and trying to determine where the book is located.  Then, finding the book and reading though the yellowed pages that smell a bit musty.

The days of circling ads in newspapers, clipping coupons, writing someone down in your Rolodex, and writing checks are almost gone.  But somehow, I still find that seeing a story about fountain pens makes me want to buy one.  I miss writing all my thoughts down in a journal with a really nice pen.  I should really go get one.  Now…..is there an app for that?

What do you miss that has fallen to the wayside now that technology has improved?  I invite you to share in the comments.


  • I recently downloaded the Notability app for my iPad to get some ability to take electronic notes without the bumbling touchscreen keyboard. Finding that my fat fingers left a lot to be desired in writing on the touch screen I ordered a stylus from Amazon.com. Yesterday, while sitting in my chair writing on an iPad with a stylus the thought occurred that I have just re-invented the note pad and ballpoint. Isn’t technology wonderful…not cost effective, just wonderful.

    • @Tom- I don’t know whether to laugh or cry. 🙂 At first, I thought, “wow- I need to do that”. Then I thought about your point and it just makes me want to run out and buy a nice pen. Thanks for reading and for sharing Tom.

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About Trish

A former HR executive and HCM product leader with over 20 years of experience.


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