The Pen is Mightier Than the Sword

The Pen is Mightier Than the Sword

The pen—do you give much thought to it? You might want to if you haven’t already, because it is mightier than the sword, and that’s saying a lot!

I switched from the standard ball-points, gels, and the like about 6 years ago when I bought my fountain pen.

by Sheaffer
by Sheaffer

To go with it, I picked up some résumé paper and a red flexible-for-mailing sealing wax and a seal stamp. For these latter materials, I purchased them from Nostalgic Impressions, whom I would highly recommend.

I love this pen. It is smooth. Writing with it is easy on the hand. It is tough. It’s 6 years old and still kicking.

I just used up the blank ink above, and I decided to jump into different colors. My favorite color is blue, but more precisely it is turquoise. So, I picked up a Sheaffer Skrip bottle from Goulet Pens in this color.

I love this new ink. It is vibrant. It is bright. It reflects me and my tastes.

I tried a new sealing wax to match it in color, and I do not like it. If you ask me, avoid any sealing wax that does not have its own wick for the occasional seal. You don’t want to burn through your butane lighters trying to melt the wax to seal your letters. If it has a wick, simply light it and then let it melt away like a candle—but faster—and then blow it out when you have enough melted wax. I think I’ll switch to this one from Nostalgic Impressions.

I tried a new paper as well. It’s really thin and remarkably smooth but it rips easily with the wax seal as it bonds so well that you can’t open the letter without a massive and destructive tear without a letter opener. If you don’t plan your margins correctly, words will be lost when opening it up.

So, I am in the market for some paper solutions. I’m entertaining the idea of getting custom pressed prints but maybe some 100% cotton 36lb weight paper will do (the résumé paper was decent but it left me wanting more). I may go with this small note stationary and envelope set from Crane or this 100% cotton paper from Original Crown Mill.

In any case, put some thought into your pen. Write a letter to someone. They’ll enjoy opening and reading it it almost as much as you did writing and sealing it.

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Best of 2016: A metal playlist

To put it bluntly, 2016 has been prolific in the metal genre of my liking, metal core, Swedish metal, prog metal, thrash metal, and more.

Here’s a playlist that I put together in Apple Music to capture my favorites. (As 2016 is not yet over, this list will be updated over the next 2 months as additional albums release.)

  1. Luminesce, by Erra
  2. Last Light, by Bury Tomorrow
  3. Alone I Stand, by Killswitch Engage
  4. Face for Lust, by Aliases
  5. Crusader, by Affiance
  6. Dreamcatcher, by Shoot the Girl First
  7. Made This Way, by The Word Alive
  8. Breathe Again, by When Our Time Comes
  9. First Father, by Silent Planet
  10. Waste Away, by SECRETS
  11. Blind Side, by Skyharbor
  12. COMA, by Issues
  13. Break, by I See Stars
  14. 570, by Motionless in White
  15. This Light I Hold, by Memphis May Fire
  16. Back Breaker, by Darkness Divided
  17. Faster, by Amaranthe
  18. Feels Good, by Volumes
  19. Crystalize, by Sonic Syndicate
  20. Zero, by Crown the Empire
  21. The Moment, by The Agonist
  22. Can We Give It All, by Imminence
  23. To the Key of Evergreen, by The Devil Wears Prada
  24. Silver Lining, by Glass Houses
  25. Blood in My Mouth, by The Amity Affliction
  26. Wasted Age, by We Came As Romans
  27. Open Door, by We Are the Catalyst
  28. The Crashing Waves, by Imminent Sonic Destruction
  29. The Bazaar, by Painted In Exile
  30. Forever United, by Your Memorial
  31. Dead Memory, by Fit for a King
  32. My Doom, by Any Given Day
  33. Natural Order, by Everyone Dies in Utah
  34. Exile, by Seraphim
  35. Entity, by Light the Fire
  36. Flatline, by Periphery
  37. Hybris, by Deadlock
  38. Hologram, by Northlane & In Hearts Wake
  39. The House of Shame, by Lacuna Coil
  40. Sorrowpsalm, by Black Crown Initiate
  41. Cognitive Computations, by Allegaeon
  42. Mind Mutation, by Solution .45
  43. Fake, by Make Them Suffer
  44. Jagged Cross Legions, by Serpentine Dominion
  45. Stars Abound, by Auras
  46. Nexus Point, by The Room Colored Charlatan
  47. Gone With the Wind, by Architects (UK)
  48. Lonesome Soul, by The Color Morale
  49. Hands of Gold, by Delain
  50. I Won’t Give In, by Asking Alexandria
  51. World on Fire, by Wovenwar
  52. Captive Conception, by Circle of Contempt
  53. The Grand Delusion, by Breakdown of Sanity
  54. Forever Lost in Van, by Soilwork
  55. Relentless, by Moments Till Fall

How to make your own subwoofer cable

If you find that you are in need of creating your own subwoofer cable, you can do it through Home Depot with a few items.

First, you need a compression tool. Check out this one from Klein.

Second, you need a RCA male connector. Home Depot only has one option, and here it is.

Third, you need wire. Here’s in-wall rated 14-gage in case you are routing the wire through your walls.

I found that I needed a solution when I had surround sound installed because the receiver end of the wire was not capped or terminated and I had no way to attach the wire to my receiver to utilize the subwoofer. The above tool and connector worked perfectly. Best Buy did not have any option for me, and the people at Home Depot did not know what to do. I had to figure it out on my own. Now, I hope you have an easy solution. Knowledge is power. Good luck!

Highly Recommended: Yamaha AVENTAGE RX-A750 7.2 Receiver

Yamaha AVENTAGE RX-A750 from Amazon.

I highly recommend this receiver.

I touched base on using a 7.2 system in the past (How to control iTunes volume completely independently from the system’s volume).

I also touched on the full listening spectrum (All about that treble no bass: Upgrading computer audio to get that boom, boom, boom).

I recently installed a in-ceiling surround sound system and opted for this 7.2 Yamaha receiver because it has AirPlay built-in and is multi-zone.

One nice advantage of this receiver that I did not know it had is that it plays music through all 5 speakers in my 5.1 setup rather than from the front 3 plus the subwoofer. By playing through all 5 speakers in the ceiling, the room has an even sound throughout.

I love how it handles AirPlay. The receiver may be off, but if I tell my iPhone to start playing to it over AirPlay, the receiver turns on automatically and then music comes through the speakers. So convenient!

The point of the AVENTAGE system is for music, too. I love the sound quality.

If you are in the market for a high quality receiver that is 7.2, AirPlay, multi-zone capable, then I would highly recommend this unit.

I got mine open-box through Amazon to save cost. It was well worth it.