I’ve got a plastic bin in the basement with a stack of journals, notebooks and sketchbooks that goes back to my college days. I’m sure at some point I’ll recycle the majority of them (hopefully before we move out of this house) but for now they’re a fun physical time machine that shows what I was focusing on at any given point in time. At the top of that stack are a series of softcover unruled Moleskines, which have served the purpose of keeping daily notes, project sketches, receipts, and other things my brain isn’t big enough to contain.

I’ve dabbled with other notebooks but none of them have matched the shape and feel of a Moleskine—I’m a very tactile guy when it comes to my paper and pens/pencils, and I like the weight and tooth of the paper—rough enough to feel good under a pencil but not too rough to collect dirt easily—and the binding, which is a tough polyurethane that has stood up to my messy hobbies and lifestyle. The only two issues I’ve ever had were when I spilled water in the hospital and soaked one of my books completely—it wound up smelling like the chemicals coming out of my chemo-soaked pores and it was enough to make me sick, so I replaced it. The second was with this last book, where the elastic closing band came off only months after I’d started using it. (I wound up using one of two high-quality rubber drive belts I took from Rob’s two junked Sony 100-disc changers, which fit the cover almost perfectly.) I don’t like the hardcovers for reasons—I tend to tuck these in my waistband when I’m running to Lowe’s or tucked in a stack of stuff I’m carrying, so small and flexible is key.

I reached the end of my current book right before Christmas; doing a little archaeology I dated its beginning to July 2021, as I was painting shutters on the house and gearing up for a trip to Delaware to have the Scout looked over. I think 1.5-2 years per each book is pretty average; there’s something satisfying to see each page filled (and in some cases overfilled) all the way to the end.

Date posted: January 5, 2024 | Filed under general | Leave a Comment »

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