I'm calling this a WIN WIN with no hesitation.
The local Woodcraft had a Turning for Troops so my neighbor and I went out last night. I have never stood in front of a lathe or held a chisel, but hey, you have to start somewhere. I apologize for the poor quality photos I only had my phone with me and they all went over seas and not home with me.
I ended up turning the three pens below, had almost no idea what I was doing except for what I read on here and found online. Comments welcome please. I'm pretty happy with how they came out, I learned many things about alignment and hand fit, not to mention that using a lathe is hands down the most addicting thing I have ever done. I went to bed try to figure out how this one girl made this super cool pen, and how I was going to cut a piece of ambrosia maple to imitate it.
I don't have a lathe yet, but will be using my neighbors for a while.
The second pic is the most problamatic pen, the nib is slightly proud of the wood and the "bubble" is to is right in the wrong place for a comfortable hold IMO. Maybe a little closer or further away would have been better.
Either way some Sailors, Marines, Soldiers, or Airmen will a pretty cool pen while deployed.