Float About #78... Dedicated to Eskesen Float Pen Collectors
© Copyright Mon/Feb 2nd, 2015

Follow-Up to Issue #77
There is a lot of ground... to cover since issue #77 of FloatAbout posted in September. I'm guessing that your November and December months moved at hyper-speed too? The days, weeks and months passed so quickly! When I look at the calendar I'm surprised to see we are well into 2015 now... how's it going for you? As expected, Mansfield is cold and white, providing the perfect climate for staying indoors to compose the newsletter and pen lists. If you don't have any snow, I would be pleased to send it your way.

Before getting into news, I'm curious... has anyone tried the Lign-Up software Beverly Broadstone suggested in the last issue? The program was designed to help collectors organize data relating to their collectibles. Would love to hear your thoughts about it. With that out of the way, let's get this party started!

Pens Out and About...

The pens below are NOT available... through FloatAbout. For your convenience, any/all information I have regarding sources has been included.

Early in the New Year, collector Alicia Delahunty... reported her husband and son, flew Icelandic Air for a fabulous Christmas vacation. Alicia shared, “Beautiful place and friendly people but no floaties found in either Akureyri or Reykjavik that I could find. Had better luck in UK on visit to family in Wales and London.” The Jekyll-Hyde exhibit closed January 20th, but the gift shop might still have inventory. Contact: (Page removed from site. May 2015 I removed link.)

The second pen Alicia discovered is from Cardiff Bay, Wales and is available from the Wales Millennium Centre http://www.wmc.org.uk/EatDrinkShop/portmeirion. You can contact them directly for more information. Sorry, I do not have a picture at this time. If you are planning a trip to the area, be sure to pop in! Congratulations to Alicia on her wonderful Christmas journey and big “thanks” for her pen leads.

January 2nd, Beverly Broadstone's... latest Hearst Castle acquisition was recorded in Float Along. Beverly's cousin, Karen, gifted her with this pen a few months back. Sorry, I lost sight of Bev's email. Karen's father had previously given Beverly yet another Hearst Castle design. Comforting to know there is a tourist attraction that continues to have site specific pens made! We all appreciate the pic and report Beverly.

Late December, Irene Skrybailo alerted everyone via Facebook... regarding her find. The pens are definitely digital Eskesen C-Clips. The caption panel includes “Maryland is for crabs!”

Irene's excited announcement.... “Floaties in MD, just north of Baltimore on 95. Love to see the pens in their natural habitat, in the ‘wild’!! Hope everyone had a lovely holiday and here's to finding many floaties in 2015!!!” These days it is a rare treat to discover float pens where they should be! Irene, thanks for sharing.

December 12th Marisa Barna provided... two new float pen finds. The groundhog pen looks especially cute and unique! The pen features Punxsutawney Phil, a famous Pennsylvania groundhog as the floater. Phil appears/disappears into his stump at Gobbler's Knob. Sadly for us, on February 2nd, Punxsutawney Phil declared we have six more weeks of winter to endure. I wonder if he regrets delivering bad news? At any rate, you can purchase his pen here:

Order here: http://www.groundhogstuff.com/groundhog_floaty_pen_c_p632.htm.

Order your LBJ pen here: http://shop.lbjstore.com/lbj-custom-floaty-pen-red/dp/2968.
Cool pens! Thank you Marisa!

Early in October, the Broadstone family... returned from their Alaskan adventure. Beverly was thrilled to report, “George found a bucketload of Eskesen floaty pens! I did not find the Norwegian Cruise Line pen I wanted, but finding four different Alaskan designs made up for that.”

“The vertical design, the prize pen, is from the Great Alaskan Lumberjack Show. The digital is image is unsharp, which made me think it was a Chinese pen at first, but the clip had the ‘E Made in Denmark’ markings.”

“We only had time to shop in Ketchikan. The excursions in Juneau and Skagway took up most of our time, but it makes me wonder if they had site specific pens like Ketchikan. Just wanted to update you on the pen discoveries. I bought 10 each design to trade with others!” Contact Beverly to arrange a trade: floatypenguin@earthlink.net. Welcome home Beverly.

Victoria B apologized... “I realize that I have procrastinated so long that it's too late for the newsletter, but I guess it will make the follow-up in FloatAlong. In March, I took a Holland America cruise around New Zealand on Holland on the MS Oosterdam. The ship's gift shop carried the same digital Eskesen Holland America pens and keychains that I found on the MS Statendam last fall, pictured in FloatAbout #76.”

“In many tourist shops throughout New Zealand towns, I found the same Chinese made pens with pieces of Paua shell as floaters. Most of them had bubbles, but they are rather attractive nonetheless. There are three different barrel imprints available in white or black barrels. Purchase here: www.pauaworld.com. They sell for $6.00 each.” (From Diana: When you arrive at the site, scroll half way down the page to see the pens. This pen may have a bubble in it, but I am extremely impressed with the quality and definition of the imprinting on the barrel! We don't see that in the USA anymore.)

“I also found a site-specific barrel imprint in the gift shop at the Rainbow Springs Wildlife Park. This was a very interesting zoo where we were able to see Kiwis and Tuataras. Their website did not include a link to their gift shop, but you could inquire via email info@rainbowsprings.co.nz.” (No photo provided.)

“I did find one genuine Eskesen pen in New Zealand, at the Waitomo Glowworm Caves. The pen depicts our fascinating excursion into a cave full of bio-luminescent insects. You have to be utterly silent in complete darkness as you float through the cave in a small boat. The guide propels the boat by pulling hand-over-hand on a rope that he can't even see. It's very surreal, but quite wonderful. The Waitomo pen is a black C-Clip with digital imagery. It costs a hefty $10.12 in US Dollars. I was thrilled to find it!”

Once again, the site did not include a link to the gift shop, or even an email address. This contact may/may not work: info@waitomo.com
They did post two phone numbers: Freephone: 0800 456 922 and Phone: +6478788228.

Victoria continued.... “My cruise started and ended in Sydney, Australia. Sorry, I was unable to find any floaty pens at the Sydney Airport.”

Back in the USA.... Victoria also discovered an Air Force One pen currently available at the Ronald Reagan Library. It is a digital Eskie. Visit the Ronald Reagan Museum Store to browse their on-line shop. The float pen is NOT pictured on the site, but you should be able to order via email or phone. museumstore@reaganfoundation.org Phones: 800-998-7641 or 805-522-9953; Fax: 805-522-6352. Thanks again Victoria for the many pen leads!

All of the information above... was posted in a timely manner, in FloatAlong. After each newsletter has posted, check Float Along for updates. As leads are received I try to post them within a day or two.

Media Sightings...
Way back on November 20th, Scotty Mausner emailed... a float pen sighting from the popular TV series The Big Bang Theory. The following morning, Beverly Broadstone painted a clear picture of the scene, complete with dialogue.

The Big Bang Theory; Season 8, Episode 10, The Champagne Reflection
Leonard, Howard and Raj were cleaning out their colleague's office since he passed away. As they were tossing away some of the Professor's belongings, they exchanged dialogue.

Leonard: We're suppose to look through all this stuff before we throw it away in case it's important.

Howard: I did. It's all outdated or disproved.

Raj: I don't know. This old pen kind of proves gravity. When I tilt it, her bathing suit falls right off!

Howard: My dad used to have a pen like that. I dated it all through 6th grade.

December 1st, collector Nils Alisch, contributed... “Later in the same episode the pen is mentioned again:”

Leonard: How come you're up so late?

Sheldon: I posted the last episode of Fun with Flags hours ago, and not a single person cared enough to comment. All that effort for nothing.

Leonard; Mm. I know how you feel. I spent the day throwing out a man's entire career, and all that's left is an old bottle of champagne and a naked lady pen that Raj took when he thought no one was looking.

Beverly pointed out... “They didn't research the pen well. Raj refers to it as an OLD pen. They should've used the clicker type pen as the prop, but it was a C-clip with an orange translucent barrel!” The scene occurs early in the program. Catch it on-line or OnDemand A big ‘Thanks you all!’ to Scotty, Beverly and Nils!

Nils Alisch also had an art/celebrity... pen sighting to impart. “ Artist, Steve Allis made a painting of a tip and strip pen that features Amanda Lepore as the model.” And yes, she is quite nude. www.artnet.com. The Amanda Lepore Stripping Pen oil on canvas painting measures an impressive 90 inches high by 14 inches wide. You may purchase it through Gallery Nine5 for just $6,000. (And if you do, I want to know about it!)

All that talk about Tip n strips... reminded me we need to have a discussion about clicker style tip n strips. While digging for duplicates I found a small box of tip n strips. Traditionally I reserve them for the TV show, Bones. In the series, FBI Agent, Seely Booth, carries a tip n strip at all times. It's become a signature quirk for the character. Unfortunately in between seasons, the actor, David Boreanaz, has the bad habit of giving the pens away, or losing them between shoots. They depend on me for replacements.

For this issue a quantity of the found tip n strips inventory will be offered on the Lottery Duplicates list. Pay close attention. Some of the tip n strips are in the naked classic style, this style is void of a top cap or pocket clip, but is refillable. Other tip n strips are in the traditional clicker style, with a push-button top. Styles are clearly marked. After years of dealing with clicker style pens I totally understand why Eskesen chose to drop them from production in 2006. So many tiny parts, and consequently so many things to go wrong! They can be extremely contrary. Still, even when a clicker pen no longer functions, it remains an attractive addition to any float pen collection. You should know in advance that since Eskesen discontinued clicker pens, refills are no longer available either. I've yet to find an alternative refill that works. So know in advance it's unlikely a clicker style pen will serve as a writing instrument.

Collectors News...
October 2014
Finn Sørensen is the chairman... of the Danish Pen Club. Organizing their annual event is labor of love and example of his dedication. Finn tells me the 2014 event was a huge success! Congratulations to Finn and all of the attendees. This is how it began....

Before the official opening of the Danish meeting, Finn met with attending Dutch members. “We spent the weekend together at a charming local Bed & Breakfast.”

The actual event took place at the Hotel Opus of Horsens, Denmark (pictured left)

Apparently, it was a great venue! Nearly 70 people attended. Finn exclaimed, “Most important of all, Eskesen graciously provided a quantity of floaty pens for the Club's lottery, which was also successful. To top it off, every attending member also received the Eskesen promo pen, pictured right.”

The Opus Hotel had commemorative pens made for their guests too. Every member of the Danish Club received this Happy Man holder and pen set. All attending members went home with this second red souvenir set. There were several auctions held for special limited edition writing instruments. Plenty of bling to go around.

After the Danish meeting, Finn teamed up with Dutch collector, Peter Groenewegen, for a long pen expedition. “First we traveled to Hamburg to visit a collector and leave my car and trailer behind. Peter then drove us deep into Poland in his car. We met with Polish pen collector, Boguslaw Pasieka for a massive pen trade. It was surreal!”

Photo left:
Boguslaw Pasieka
with PENS!

Photo left to right:
Peter Groenewegen,
Boguslaw Pasieka,
and Finn Sørensen.

“The following day Peter and I attended a Polish Fair in Sosnowiec outside Katowice. I amassed 200+ new pens for my collection! Then it was time to make the 1000 kilometer drive back to Hamburg.”

“The next day we set course for the annual German pen trade meeting in Bad Meinberg.
We found great accommodations at Haus Egeria, owned and operated by a former teacher
and his 88 year old mother.”

“The German meeting was a 2 day affair, October 3rd and 4th. It was held at the The Vital Zum Stern Hotel in Bad Meinberg. A lot fewer in attendance compared to Denmark, but that allowed time for me to trade with everybody and they brought thousands of pens for trade!” This is a picture of a portion of Finn's set-up.

Photo right:
“Front row, third from the left, is the host, Jim Frost. Jim is a Scotsman living in Germany and married to a local German lady. The President, Andreas Hennig is right in the middle wearing a red T-shirt. At the very back is Hans Georg Schriver-Abeln. He has participated in pen exhibitions as far away as Argentina! I am in the middle.”

Finn was interviewed by a German radio station and two different newspapers. His massive collection netted Finn a new title, World Champion of Pens. And he has a giant pen to prove it. 400,000+ is a staggering number, but for my audience I should clarify, the majority are not float pens.

“Soon after the German conference, Peter Groenewegen headed home to Holland. The following Sunday I visited a family in the nearby city of Detmold. They had approached me with an irresistible offer. The husband, a devoted pen collector, Werner Bünte, had passed away. When they read about the World Champion of Pens in the newspaper they wanted me to have his pens! This was a great honour. The entire day was spent dismantling pens from the walls of their house!”

“The following day I visited friends in Holland. Highly enjoyable! I also brought home an Eskesen floaty collection of 900 pens! After 12 days on the road, it was time to make my return trip. Now that I am home, I am in the process of purchasing a second shipping container to store all of my pens. They won't fit in the house anymore!

Finn has added links to the articles on his website. Click here for the English version. Visit often... it's a fun trip. http://www.pencollector.dk/default.asp?lang=uk.

Pens Past, Present and Future....
My November appointment.... to have my computer reconfigured was canceled. I intend to have a second drive and dual operating systems installed, but I've been unable, or in some way, unwilling, to part with my computer for 3-6 days. My hesitation is fueled by fear of the unknown. What if it's like starting all over again?! The last time I tried that, it didn't go so well. I have found ways to detour most of the problems areas. While the situation has stabilized, it remains complicated. One way or another, the work gets done, so the upgrade will have to wait.

As for the present... it's time for a Lottery!

Lottery Duplicates for Issue #78 - February 2015

DEADLINE for receipt of your wishlist is NOON (EST) Fri/Feb 6th, 2015
I will accept wishlists anytime between now through the deadline.

If you intend to participate in the lottery, please send an email to DiAndra@FloatAbout.com with 'I Want to Play' in the subject line.
That way, if your wishlist doesn't reach me, I can give you a nudge before you miss the deadline.

When I receive your wishlist, I will respond with confirmation of receipt.
If you do NOT receive confirmation, it's because I did NOT receive your wishlist!

If you have any doubts, PLEASE contact me. I don't want to leave any collectors behind.

For more lottery information and ways to improve your odds of getting the pens you really want, refer to the Lottery Details page.

For those that do now wish to participate in the lottery duplicates drawing, you should know... when the lottery is over, all remaining inventory will be reposted and available on a first-come, first-served basis. Be patient. Because I need time to conduct the actual drawing, prepare invoices, send notifications and edit the duplicates list... it's usually a full 2-4 full days after the lottery deadline before the remaining duplicates are posted.

To honor an annual tradition... there will be a February Main List sale. Purchase any pen(s) included on the Main List, between now and February 14th and $1 will be deducted from the price of each pen. The Main List begins with the Advertise category and continues through USA states.

A new category called Overstocks!... has been introduced. In an effort to thin inventory, each time a newsletter posts, I will include a group of 5-10 designs that are currently overstocked. These designs will be offered at the ridiculous price of $2 each through a sale period of about two weeks, or until a design sells out, whichever comes first. The February Overstock sale begins now and runs through Valentine's Day, February 14th. After the sale, remaining designs will revert to their original prices.

At $2.00/pen you can afford to share pens with friends, family, neighbors, co-workers, even folks that provide you with daily service, like your bank teller, postal carrier, or boss as a ‘thank you’. Who knows, you might even ignite an interest that inspires a new collector. Get em' while they're HOT!

The future is never certain... but issue #79 could post as early as mid-May. At this time, I can't promise another lottery, but I will try. There are many easier ways to distribute pens. For the moment the 300+ pens on the current Lottery Duplicates list and hundreds of pens on the Main List will have to do.

On the Homefront....
The holidays came and went... no surprise there. Bill and I were both under the weather from mid-December and into January. Nothing serious, just horrible head colds. We were so anxious to put 2014 behind us and start anew. To date, 2015 has been good for us. Josh has settled into his position as manager of the Lucas Library. Bill continues to do woodturning, keeping up with wholesale orders and stocking his website.

Our latest feline rescue, Evie, has blossomed into a very bushy young lady. Even bushier than she was when this pic was taken in October. Evie has fully embraced her status as Queen Bee. So much so, she has earned the nickname, the Woolly Bully. Despite her sometimes pushy behavior, both Kobe and Longjohn accept her as family. Evie is very happy in her new home! She keeps the boys on their toes and her frisky antics generate a lot of laughter in our household.

We have not taken a real vacation since 2009 and it's really bugging me. Something always gets in the way! I continue to participate in the local flea market ten times per year. Two or three times a year the Toy Show is added to the schedule. Kevin Spore and Tim Babcock promote both events and they are a joy to work with. Mary Jean Theaker is a staff member and dear friend. We combine our efforts to create and manage a giant booth. Yes, it is a lot of work, but a labor of love. We actually have fun.

Our winter clay classes began last Wednesday and continue through mid-March. That will be the highlight of our winter weeks and usher us into spring. What are you doing to occupy yourself through the season? You better think of something! It's far from over. Is 2015 treating you well? Big plans for the New Year? Please touch base so I know what's happening with you. I hope the newsletter and lists brighten your week!

Keep your head above water... FLOAT!

That's all for now. Updates will be added to Float Along.
Check it frequently for incoming news!

Go forward to read Issue #79
Back up and read Issue #77, it posted Mon/Sept 22, 2014

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FLOAT ABOUT... Diana Andra, 1676 Millsboro Rd, Mansfield, OH 44906-3374
phone 419/529-8876 (Noon - midnight EST)
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