A-Z from Euroffice, we love office life…
….and pride ourselves on being the office supplies experts, with this in mind, we’ve come up with a handy product guide. The A – Z of Office Supplies. A gift from Euroffice to your office, to help you find out more about what we have to offer. Each week we’ll feature a selection of our favourite products along with some quirky facts about each of them and of course, all the information you’ll need to purchase your own. I wonder if anyone will get the full A-Z collection 🙂 … This week we shine the spotlight on E-H…
E is for…
- Jack Kelley designed the first mouse pad in 1969. Instead of going into computing, Kelley went on to design office furniture for Herman Miller.
- People used to use sponges from the sea, until Brit Thomas Hancock patented a rubber sponge in 1846. He also invented a machine called the ‘masticator’.
- The Oxford English Dictionary uses the term mouse mat, rather than mouse pad, as its primary listing: ‘rigid or slightly resilient material… on which a… mouse is moved’.
- In the 1940s the American Air Force used plastic envelopes as a part of a water purifying system to be used by airmen adrift in dinghies at sea.
- TV cops always use plastic envelopes for evidence, but that’s not correct procedure; items that need to breathe are actually put into paper bags instead.
- In 1963 British designer Robin Day invented the polypropylene (plastic) and metal stacking chairs we all used in school – 14 million have been sold since then.
F is for…
- ‘Fan death’ is a South Korean superstition where people are afraid that falling asleep with a fan on, could end in suffocation. So some Korean fans are sold with timers.
- In 1931 Popular Mechanics magazine suggested shopkeepers attach a torch to an oscillating fan for their window displays to ‘catch the eye of passers-by’.
- Astronauts’ gloves have heaters in the fingers. That’s because fingers are the part of the body that get coldest in space. And probably in the earthly office too.
- Documents found in two filing cabinets owned by Marilyn Monroe reveal the star was no bimbo; she owned 400 books as well as a Rodin and a Degas.
- In 2011 a piece of Queen Elizabeth’s 1947 wedding cake was found in a hospice filing cabinet. An antique dealer later bought the slice for £1,100.
- The first readily-available filing cabinets were sold by a company started by Melvil Dewey to help market the card indexes used in his Dewey Decimal system.
- Early side saddles were just pillows for peasant women to sit behind a male rider, but noblewomen had their own horses & saddles with footrests calls planchettes.
- Tutankhamun’s throne had a footrest engraved with images of his enemies. Trampling people underfoot, some of his sandals were similarly decorated.
- When Shapur I, the emperor of Persia, captured the Roman emperor Valerian in 260 AD, he used him as a footstool to climb onto his horse.
G is for…
- Most of the props in the 1998 psychological thriller Pi, directed by Black Swan’s Darren Aronofsky, were held together with glue sticks.
- As part of a materials workshop, NASA scientists discussed the ‘torsional characteristics of […] hot melt glue sticks’ in 2001.
- The earliest known adhesive in the world dates back to 200,000 BC; tar was used to glue stone flakes to wood, perhaps for a spear.
- Around 320 BC an Indian government official recorded five different sorts of sugar, including a boiled variety called ‘khanda‘ – is that the start of candy?
- The head of a sugar refinery in Moravia patented a press for making sugar cubes in 1843. His wife had sliced a finger trying to break up a block of sugar.
- In 1764 Britain passed the Sugar Act to prevent Americans from smuggling sugar into their country. They responded by boycotting British goods.
H is for…
- In 1939 3M invented Scotchlite – maybe the first reflective material. Made using tiny glass beads, it became essential in WW2: need to spot a downed pilot in the ocean?
- Karl Lagerfeld wore a high-visibility vest for a 2008 French public safety campaign: ‘It’s yellow, it’s ugly, it doesn’t go with anything, but it could save your life’.
- Did you know you can buy high-vis vests for chickens? (Something something crossing, something something road.)
- Without Japanese calligraphy we may not have had highlighters. People say soft-tip pens were invented in Japan as a way of mimicking writing with a brush.
- In 2011 Stabilo, the world’s largest manufacturer of highlighters, announced they’d sold 1.8 billion of these pens worldwide.
- A company in America sells Bible-friendly highlighters; the ink won’t bleed through the thin pages. Hallelujah.
Make sure you’ve read the full of A-Z of Office Supplies: