My other Danitrio pens have a frog, a dragon and phoenix, a wave, and a pair of ninjas. The baby octagon that arrived the other day must be the black sheep of the family. Or it coalesced from the atoms of Hotblack Desiato’s spaceship.
Zaphod’s attention however was elsewhere. His attention was riveted on the ship standing next to Hotblack Desiato’s limo. His mouths hung open.
“That,” he said, “that … is really bad for the eyes …”
Ford looked. He too stood astonished.
It was a ship of classic, simple design, like a flattened salmon, twenty yards long, very clean, very sleek. There was just one remarkable thing about it.
“It’s so … black!” said Ford Prefect, “you can hardly make out its shape … light just seems to fall into it!”
Zaphod said nothing. He had simply fallen in love.
The blackness of it was so extreme that it was almost impossible to tell how close you were standing to it.
“Your eyes just slide off it …” said Ford in wonder. It was an emotional moment. He bit his lip.
Not only is this the plainest Danitrio I own, it’s also the shortest. Here it is beside Dragon and Phoenix, a Takumi-sized pen. Note the difference between urushi-covered ebonite and plain ebonite. There’s already a faint hint of oxidation, no matter how careful I’ve been not to leave Dragon and Phoenix lying about exposed to light.
The facets aren’t crystal sharp, but rounded off, giving the pen an almost organic feel in the hand. The matte black urushi finish (called kuro-keshi) doesn’t only look good; it protects the ebonite underneath from oxidizing.
I asked for a flexible nib in EEF. It’s semi-flexible, unlike the EEF in the Danitrio ninja pen. (That one is several years old, and it is possible that there have been changes in nib manufacture since then. Or I could have just gotten really lucky.)
The first fountain pen many people buy is black. It feels like a smart choice, like black leather shoes or a black satchel. Black doesn’t have to be boring, especially in the world of writing instruments, where variations in finish, shape, length, girth, weight and trim abound. There will always be a pen that speaks to you and says, “Take me home.”
Was your first fountain pen black? Do you still have it?