My Addiction

My name is Patrick, and I am a notebook addict. I have never really tried to hide my addiction. Many who know me well know of this “problem” (I am sill not sure I feel comfortable calling it that). Sometimes I am able to fight it. I convince myself that I really don’t need yet another notebook that will sit on a shelf and probably never be used. Sometimes they are given to me. Sometimes, I just can’t stop myself. The paper is too nice, the aesthetic beauty too compelling. The myriad of uses flood my brain and I become drunk with the elixir of possibility.

Here are just some of the examples of the times I have fallen:

* Black n’ Red Ruled A4 – Years ago I worked for a company that had an office in Brussels. These were the office standard issue notebook there. It was love at first sight so on a visit I grabbed two and I still have both. These are big euro letter sized bound books with 192 pages of bright white paper. One was used as a Journal, during a particularly miserable time in my life, for about a dozen pages. The other remained unused. Looking back, I figure that the misery did not stop but my will and desire to chronicle it did.

* Grey Sketchbook – This was a birthday gift sent to me by my friend Adeline in the U.K. I am not sure of the manufacturer, as there are no markings to indicate it. The book has a grey suede slipcover, blank pages with the following quote from Gandhi stamped into the cover ” You must be the change you wish in the world.” At my most recent day job, I gave it to one of my student workers who is a wonderful cartoonist and had him draw something on the first page. What he returned to me is a true work of whimsical art. That is what is linked to above since I can’t find the manufacturer of the notebook.

* Xonex Ru – Bought this in the Walker Art Museum Gift Shop after seeing a friend with one. I have the charcoal grey model. There was just something about it that I was compelled by. Perhaps it was the European sizing – A bit more flat and geometrically shaped than a Moleskine. It has a number of the same features though, an elastic closure and a pocket in the back. Also, here’s the thing, I generally don’t use notebooks without ruled lines or grids. My writing is far too messy and my art skills are like those of a two year old.

* Muji – I actually have two different Muji Notebooks, neither of which can be found in the US. They were brought back for me by a co-worker from Japan. The first is about the same dimensions as the Xonex Ru, has a beige craft cover and decent blank paper (did I mention I usually don’t use blank notebooks). The other is very much like a Large Lined Moleskine but with a bookcloth cover and without a pocket in the back. It does have the elastic closure though.

* Moleskines – Since they keep popping up, I will discuss the several Moleskines I have. I have a Pocket Lined (this was my daily capture for a long while). I have a Large Lined (use this as a personal journal). I have a Pocket Squared (unused). I have a Reporter Squared (A few mind and process maps but otherwise unused). I have a Barcelona City Book (The maps were indispensable. Wish I had written more in it and hope to return soon to fix that).

As I said, these are just a few examples. I have intentionally left out quite a few. Many of which I have written about recently here. The two Levenger Circa Notebooks. The several Field Notes Brand notebooks I have waiting on deck for me to complete the one I am using. The list could go on.

OK, I guess I may need an intervention.

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