Saturday, May 5, 2007

There Goes That Million-Dollar Idea

About a year ago, I needed a bartender-to-go.  I was co-producing our Awards show, which includes a pre-show dinner.  We'd been planning to just sell wine and beer -- a non-profit can get a one-day permit to sell wine and beer pretty cheap.  But, when we contacted the Bureau of Alcoholic Beverage Control, we found we could only get the permit if we had a copy of our letter from the IRS saying we were a valid non-profit.  We were a valid non-profit (still are), but we'd lost our exemption letter and nobody could find a copy.  Apparently, ABC would not accept a link to the Guidestar website which said we were a valid non-profit.

So, we were either going to have a "dry" event, or we needed a bartender.  Someone who could come to our event with his own liquor license and sell wine and beer.  We called lots of restaurants with off-premises licenses, but nobody would cater our drinks without catering our food.  And we already had a food caterer.  Who did not have a liquor license.

It dawned on me that I was not the only person who ever needed a bartender to go, and that if I'd thought of this idea, somebody else probably did, too.  I turned to the internet.  After a couple hours of searching (and a few phone calls), I stumbled upon About Town Bartending.  Licensed, insured, willing to set up a no-host bar at your event.  Hooray!

Last night, I had another brilliant idea.  I was listening to music on a portable mp3 player (i.e. not an ipod) with some fairly spiffy earphones.  The sound quality was particularly impressive.  And I wanted to take said mp3 player with me on my travels today, but it dawned on me that it didn't come with any sort of carrying case for the earphones.  And if I threw them in my purse, they'd just get all tangled, and maybe even the little ear bits would come off.  Someone really needs to invent a little holder for earphones.  And you know what? (I thought.)  It should come with a little belt clip, so you can wear it around the office with your music player, and when your boss wants to talk to you, you can take your earphones out of your ears and put them somewhere, rather than having to hold them in your hand or let them drop to the ground.  Went to sleep wondering where I'd get the parts to be able to put such a device together, and with visions of patents dancing in my head.

Woke up.  Googled.  Found this:


Yep.  The EarPod  Exactly what I'd had in mind -- right down to the belt clip.

On the plus side:  got what I needed for less than $10.

On the minus side:  can't give up my day job.

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