#13 becoming an expert on an obscure historical event

war of the roses was interesting, and i started to learn about that. but then someone informed me that was not, in fact, obscure. so i decided to go with the invention of the zipper. many people know what a zipper is - i might even venture that most know what a zipper is - but few know its elusive history. without further delay, i present "The Creation of the Zipper," or "Why Elias Howe Was Kicking Himself From the Grave in 1917."

elias howe in 1851:
i. love. clothes. i love designing, sewing, and coming up with new ways to design and sew. i've been working most of my life as a mechanic, fixing machines that make wool and yarn and other such things, so i'm thinking i'd like to combine my passions of clothes and machinery and create a machine that helps with sewing. also in development are new types of clothes latches. i recently created one such latch, which i've patented as "an automatic, continuous clothing closure." it still has some snags, but i'm just too busy working on my machine for sewing to perfect it.

whitcomb judson in 1893: 
i have a pal who has a stiff back. poor fellow can't even bend over to lace up his boot. so last week he looks over at me all sad and in pain; he looks and me and says "judson, you claim to be an inventor, invent me up some laceless boots!" knowing that to be utterly impossible, i quickly created the clasp locker. the clasp locker basically is a device that makes hook and eye closures easier to connect. i am awesome.

gideon sundback in 1913:
i work at universal fastening company, the company that manufactured the clasp locker back in the day. i needed a bonus so my wife and i could throw a party to celebrate the passing of the seventeen amendment, so i invented a separable fastener. unfortunately the patent wasn't issued until 1917, so we ended up having a party to celebrate woodrow wilson beginning his second term as our president. 

b.f. goodrich in 1925:
i make boots. good, sturdy boots. and i'm always looking for ways to make them more modern. i'm a forward thinking man, you know. so i incorporated sundback's separable fastener into the design of my boot. they look great! i always tell the boys "zip 'er up!" when they're showing the new style to the crowds. 

bam. zipper'd. 

end scene.

tomorrow: learning to skateboard.


  1. reason #1 i know you are a legitimate expert on the invention of the zipper: you wrote that in first person, which means you not only memorized facts but you went as far as to synthesize the information you'd learned.

    reason #2: because you are freaking awesome.

  2. and i would be in agreement with andrea's reasons...both #1 AND #2:) xoxo

  3. sman, you are probably a terrific and encouraging teacher. :) lahve!

  4. They're doing a zipper segment on CBS Sunday Morning right now! :)