People who grew up in the nineties in India truly had a great time. An entire generation was the guinea pig of so many businesses that they were the most true examples of ‘Customer is King’. Every product that was launched in the nineties was ingenious and had its fair share in the light, until it was updated and finally lost under a deluge of new products. We take a look at the five stationeries that were part and parcel of every school bag in the nineties.
Yes, these pens are still available, but they are nowhere as widely used as they were in the eighties and the nineties. Back in those days, parents were under the impression – and rightly so – that the handwriting of the students would get worse if they wrote with ball point pens. And of course, some of the inks and the nibs of the ball point pens literally tore the paper. In fact, many schools had a no ball point pen policy till around the eighth grade, and even after that, the ball point pen was a secondary pen, never a primary one.
It is a marvel then that Reynolds pens were so successful even when there was an entire system against them. We suspect that these pens made their way into the homes from papa’s and mommy’s office and curled up silently like a cat, thereby carving a niche in every Indian’s life.
The Bullet Pen
Fret not, there weren’t actually bullets in these pens. In other parts of the world, they were known as cartridge pens. This is because the ink for these pens was injected through a bullet shaped cartridge. These pens were quite a rage for a month or so, before people realised that they were quite expensive, as compared to the common ink pens, and that the ink in the cartridges would dry up if not used. The bullet pens were stylish to look at and colourful, something distinctly different than the dull and drab looking generic ink pens.
IWAKO eraser set by Silivren
Yes, these were a thing in the late nineties and even the early 2000s. Children loved them because they were new and shiny and parents hated them because they were detachable, and therefore became small parts that couldn’t be used to do the one thing students used erasers – to erase. Seriously, this product should be the Microsoft ME of the world of stationery.
Eraser cum Sharpener cum Duster
You read that right, that was a duster. Basically this was a rectangle with four ends, so one of them was the sharpener, another was an eraser and because they did not know what one could give on the other end, they wound up giving it a brush. We still aren’t sure what that brush was used for.