A lot of the stories you see in this blog are about looking more closely at something that looks otherwise ordinary. For example, take this one, which turned up at the DC show:
Looks kind of like a military clip Eversharp, doesn’t it? But on closer examination, this is no Eversharp:
This one reads "Neo" Duplex U.T.M. Patent No. 10130. There may be more numbers at the end of that patent number, since the stamp trails off a bit. Since normally a "duplex" pencil will have more than one color lead, I unscrewed the nose cone to see what was going on inside:
Now that’s a cool design! Turning the knob one way advances one color, while turning it the other retracts it and advances the other.
I was pretty proud of myself, scoping this one out of the crowd, so I proudly showed it to Michael Little back at the table. "That’s pretty neat lettering on the side," he said.
What? There’s lettering on the side?
So much for my powers of observation. Back at home, I posted a message on Fountain Pen Network asking for help translating this, and I got a reply back from "Soot," who said the language is Chinese or Kanji and the inscription reads "Fire Department/Police Department/Commemorating the newly constructed building."
As for what a "UTM Patent" is, it looks like it stands for Universiti Teknologi Malaysia.