When Interests Collide

Why hello there! Things have been scarce around these parts, as I’ve been busy narrowly avoiding being crushed by a falling tree on my birthday, looking at Mt. Hood from new angles, and learning how to saddle stitch leather.

This summer, I spent nearly every free weekend in the outdoors, sometimes motorcycling, sometimes camping, and oftentimes both in the same trip. Wilderness runs deep in my blood, and I needed this summer to get back into it after a few years without many wild travels.

ANYWAY, a few days ago I was watching a wonderful documentary called “Alone in the Wilderness” when I spotted what appears to be a Sheaffer Lifetime PFM(?) with a Triumph nib:

The gentleman pictured using this fine implement is Dick Proenneke, one of my heroes. In the late 60s, Mr. Proenneke built himself a cabin in a remote part of Alaska with hand tools and hard work, and then spent the next thirty-five years homesteading in the wilderness, observing and filming the weather and wildlife, and keeping detailed journals — apparently with a fountain pen.

If this at all appeals to you, the documentaries “Alone in the Wilderness” part 1 and 2 are worth checking out from your local library, along with the book “One Man’s Wilderness“.

I do love it when my interests collide.

9 thoughts on “When Interests Collide

      • independentclause December 17, 2018 / 1:46 pm

        What wilderness reads do you recommend? (Beston is tamed wilderness, because he is an Easterner.) I could use some new books other than my super-fun dragon-ninja girl-masquerading-as-boy read.


      • The Economical Penster December 17, 2018 / 7:36 pm

        Right now I’m reading a fascinating old book called “At Home in The Woods” by Vena and Bradford Angier. It’s definitely a product of its times (circa 1950) but I must love a book whose first illustration is a photo of Vena holding a rifle. I think I’ve mentioned Pam Houston’s “A Little More About Me” before. I still have a soft spot for Gary Paulsen’s “Hatchet” from when I was a kid but his memoir “Woodsong” has some memorable images that have stuck with me for decades. In a different kind of wilderness, Steve Callahan’s “Adrift” is pretty stunning.


  1. independentclause December 18, 2018 / 4:30 am

    I believe I’ve read “At Home In the Woods.” I’m thinking of rereading “My Side of the Mountain” too. And I’ll look up “Adrift” and Pam Houston’s book (which maybe I’ve read?). My brain is a sieve.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. jmccarty3 December 23, 2018 / 9:41 am

    The pen Mr. Proenneke is using is a Sheaffer with a conical Triumph nib. We can’t see enough of it to identify it more specifically. It’s not a PFM–those pens had inlaid nibs. I enjoyed reading about him, even though that’s the sort of thing I would never do.

    Liked by 1 person

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