Do You Spend Money on Quality or Quantity? The $120 Pen Story
I’ll be the first one to admit that I have a fascination for pens. For as long as i can remember I have always been fascinated with them. I love dissecting them to see how they work, and I love holding a quality writing instrument in my hand, and feeling the superior craftsmanship. The only problem with this obsession is that pens can become very expensive, very quickly.
If you move past your big box store pen types, you automatically get into the mid 3-figures for a pen. Yikes! Yes, that means that the majority of quality writing instruments cost upwards of $100, and some a whole lot more.
I want to tell you a quick story about my decision to buy a $120 pen, and let you decide if it was smart or not.
The Benchmade 1100 Pen Series
From my pen research, this is one of the coolest pens that I have ever seen. Not only is it extremely awesome to look at, but it comes with a space pen refillable ink cartridge, it’s ergonomic handle reduces writing pressure, and it is made from hard anodized aluminum so it can be a self-defense weapon if need be. All in all, this is a rock star pen.
With that said, the pen does cost $120. If you visit the Benchmade site however, you will actually find that this is one of the cheapest models that they have for sale there. It’s a bargain right?
Not so fast.
What could possibly be a good reason to buy a pen that cost $120?
When I asked myself this question, and my wife asked me this question, we began to have a revealing conversation about quality versus quantity. This Benchmade pen comes with a lifetime warranty. So theoretically, it is the only pen I would ever have to buy for the rest of my life. Surely, that is worth $120.
This pen also uses Fisher space pens refills. This means that I will always have pen refills readily available, and this pen can write anywhere…even upside down and under water!
The pen is also virtually indestructible. It’s made of solid aluminum, and could literally be used in self-defense with the crazy point on the end of the pen.
That is my PRO list.
Here is the CON list, happily provided for me by my wife.
IT’S $120 FOR A PEN!
Really that is the only negative thought that we need to list, but I want to dig a little bit deeper. If I could pay $120 for one writing instrument and never have to spend money on pens again in my life, would it be worth it?
The short answer is not at all. Even with my obsession for pens, I would estimate that I spend roughly $5 on pens throughout the year. All of the pens that I like are ones that are left behind by customers in our office, or ones that I find randomly on the widewalk or in shopping carts. No, I’m not a cleptomaniac, pens are just something that seem to dissappear very easily. Which brings me to the deciding factor in this decision.
Yes, my $120 pen would theoretically last me for the rest of my life, but it won’t be worth anything if I lose it. One careless drop into my bag, and it’s on the floor and making someone else’s day. I am out $120 and my pride has taken a big hit.
So in theory, yes, a $120 pen that would last me for the rest of my ife would be a great value. However in reality, the risk of losing that pen vastly overshadows the benefit it provides.
Bottom line: I did not buy the pen, and I will continue salivating over it for years to come. Maybe someone else will leave theirs in a shopping cart one day…
Let the debate of quality versus quantity rage on!