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[tweetmeme] I’ve been reading Strange & Fascinating Facts About Famous Brands by “Dr. Knowledge” Charles Reichblum.  I loved this book and gave it 5 stars over on Goodreads.

A story which caught my eye was about a product that made millions, but the inventor only made $400.

Walter Hunt 1796-1859

His Product Made Millions.  He Made $400.

One day in 1839, Walter Hunt was fooling around with a piece of wire and came up with a new kind of pin.  He called it a dress pin, but the world came to know it as the safety pin.

Hunt patented the safety pin, and that patent went on to be worth millions of dollars.  However, shortly after receiving his patent and before the money started rolling in, Hunt sold it for $400 because he owed a man $15 at the time and didn’t have the cash.  Hunt paid his creditor $15 and was happy to pocket $385.

What’s worse, Hunt had invented a sewing machine years before and had thrown away a fortune when he didn’t patent it at all.  His reason was that he feared it might cause unemployment among seamstresses.

But don’t be too worried about Hunt’s misfortune.  He eventually became rich with his inventions of a fire alarm, knife sharpener, icebreaker, and fountain pen.

Not many people have heard of Hunt, but this New York mechanic was one of history’s most unusual and ingenious inventors.

I read things like this and it kind of makes me sad.  I think of ideas all the time and say “someone should parent this or that” and of course I should be the one to patent the idea, but never do….

Do any of you have patents on anything?

Please comment and subscribe.

Walter Hunt image from: http://www.invent.org/hall_of_fame/279.html
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Luke & Laura ~ November 16, 1981

Luke & Laura married on November 16, 1981.  The event was watched by 30 million viewers and remains the highest-rated hour in American soap opera history.

I’m reading a book called Dr. Knowledge Presents – Strange & Fascinating Facts About Famous Brands.
An entry caught my attention:

Why They’re Called Soap Operas

Oxydol laundry soap started something new in 1933.  They began sponsoring a daily fifteen-minute afternoon drama on network radio.  Their program was called Ma Perkins.

It was popular, and soon other soap brands decided to sponsor the same kind of show.  The airwaves because full of afternoon dramas aimed at a predominately female audience.  The phrase “soap operas” entered the language to describe these soap-sponsored programs.

Some long-running soap operas of that era included Stella Dallas, Portia Faces Life, Just Plain Bill, Life Can Be Beautiful, The Guiding Light, Our Gal Sunday, and Backstage Wife.

(Incredibly, Virginia Payne, who played Ma on Ma Perkins, held that role for the entire twenty-seven-year run of the program – never missing any of its 7,065 broadcasts.)

While we’re on the topic, if you watch General Hospital answer this….

Luke & Laura ~ November 16, 2006

A couple of years ago when Laura came out of her coma she and Luke got remarried.  Everyone thought it was a farce because Luke was married to Tracy Quartermaine.  Now that it’s come out that Luke & Tracy were not really married, it makes me think – he is really married to Laura now isn’t he?  He can’t marry Tracy without getting a divorce from Laura.  Am I remembering things correctly?

Do you watch soap operas?  If so, which one?

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I’m reading a book called Dr. Knowledge Presents – Strange & Fascinating Facts About Famous Brands.
One entry caught my attention:

He Was Honored for Inventing Nothing

Hanson Gregory is honored as the inventor of nothing.  The “nothing” refers to the hole in doughnuts.

…doughnuts originally had no hole in the center.  But Gregory, a sea-captain from Rockport, Maine, is credited as the first to create doughnuts with that distinctive hole – and he did it for a very practical reason.

Gregory loved to eat doughnuts while piloting his ship.  Instead of having the cakes slide all around while the ship was going through rough waters, he put a hole in his doughnuts so he could place them on a spike near his steering wheel.

I would love to “invent” something that’s a whole lot of nothing.  I come up with ideas that are a whole lot of something, but just don’t have the technical know-how to make them a reality.  Maybe someday….

I could just invent ANOTHER mascara that will make your lashes longer….  For as long as I can remember the commercials always say they’ll make your lashes longer and longer and longer….  My eyelashes should be 100 feet long by now!!

What invention ideas do you have?

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