Back when The Husband was trying to woo me with his wit and charm, he bought me a pen. It wasn’t just any kind of pen. It was a Montblanc Boheme Rouge. Oh he was good. He knew exactly how to get to me. “You can use it when you’re famous,” he’d said, as I unwrapped the tiny box. “To sign books.”
To sign books. That was music to my ears. I beamed ear to ear. “Thanks,” I said, visualizing a rush of people lining up at my table, a stack of books piled high beside me, at a Barnes and Nobles somewhere in the world.
Well it’s been about six years since The Husband presented me with that thoughtful gift. So far there has been no book. Oh sure, I wrote a book. I wrote the same book about six different times. I even had an agent. And then I had to get another agent. (And then she passed away). And then I took time off. I had the kid. For two years the Montblanc Boheme sat on my dresser buried in the bottom of a jewelry box, until one day I said fuck it, placed the pen in the pocket of my navy blue polyester blazer, and took the thing to work.
“Would you like the cheese ravioli or the basalmic chicken with rice?” I’d ask whoever it was sitting in business class that day, the Boheme hovering above a piece of paper ripped from a cart.
“I can’t believe you’re using that pen at work!’ The Husband once cried, horrified to see it hanging out of my pocket.
Me, neither, but when else was I going to use it? It was a shame to let such a beautiful thing rot away in a box. So the pen continued to go to work. Until the pen exploded at work. When I took it to a Montblanc dealer, I learned that the pen does not fly well, which is why it now writes all gloppy, and no longer goes to work. Back in the jewelry box it went.
Until last night.
The pen, I am happy to report, signed a very important document. It signed a contract. A contract to write. For money. Not a lot of money. But money nonetheless. Which means, when money is involved, even if it’s just a little bit of money, I can now call myself a writer, a real writer, without blushing and then taking it back.