I never knew what a Moleskine notebook was until March of 2004.  I discovered these little black gems while I was on a trip with my wife and daughter.  Each year we spend the week after Easter on the coast.  For those seven days we call Emerald Isle, North Carolina home.  We spend the week reading, exploring, eating well, resting, fishing and acting like locals.

Each morning I head out before sunrise.  My destination is usually Bogue Inlet Fishing Pier; where the fishing is usually good and the conversation is always better.  One cool morning both the fishing and the conversation was slow so I made my way over to the local bookstore.  It is an independent store that has all the charm and warmth that you would expect from such a place at the beach.  I was looking for a new journal when I came across what would become a new companion.

I picked up the small notebook and opened it up.  When I did a small piece of paper fell to the floor. I picked it up and read “The history of a legendary notebook.”  Bruce Chatwin’s story was enough to win me over, but when I discovered that Ernest Hemingway had used them I had to have one immediately, so I bought two.

     I went back to the pier to see if the fishing had picked up.  I carried one of my new notebooks in my coat pocket, determined that if the fishing was still slow that I could write until I had nothing else to write about, but it would end up being days later before I ever printed the first word in it.

Mkes_5At first I could not bring myself to write in it because I could not think of anything that I would or could write that would be worthy to put in such a fine book with such a rich history.  Finally I thought of the words of Herb Brooks, who was the coach of the 1980 United States men’s hockey team that won the gold medal against astronomical odds.  When asked by his wife what he liked most about the young men on that team, he told her that he admired them most for “sacrificing for the unknown.”  So, on the first page of my very first Moleskine I wrote that quote and I begin to fill the remaining pages with my own words, telling who I am, what I am doing and sharing the dreams that I hope will one day come true.  When I go back and read what I wrote I realize that what I had to say was worthy, and that the words belonged in such a fine book.


Needless to say this little book has become my friend, I go nowhere without it.  I have a stockpile of them hidden on my bookshelf ready to go when the current one has been filled.  I consider it a privilege to own one. 

"Little Black Gems"
By Calvin Lassiter, Jr.

Image: Lorretine @ Moleskinerie/FLICKR
© All rights reserved. Used with permission.

– Discover and join the Moleskine Communities at MYSPACE, FLICKR, ORKUT, LIVEJOURNAL & GOOGLEGROUPS.
-Take Lauren Cerand’s Lux Lotus 52 Projects Challenge.
– Birthday greetings to Alan Webber (Nov.11) at Moleskinerie/ORKUT
– For those lucky to be in the area, visit the My Moleskine exhbit in Taipei 11.4 through 12.31.
– Thanks to Julian and Lori for their recent donations.
– My eBay account was hijacked yesterday and somebody tried to sell a non-existent 17" Apple Powerbook G4. Issue has been recolved now. Thanks Danika.^_^
– Current circumstances necessitate that I spend more time offline
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Get out, have a life – and write about it!