Sadly, the ushering in of 2009 has also signaled the end of those wacky “Novelty New Year” glasses. I’ve been telling people for weeks that they should stock up on these 2009s because with that awkwardly placed ‘1’ in next year’s date, this will be the final year of their charm.

My prediction was more accuarate than I imagined. Richard Sclafani and Peter Cicero, two beer buddies and Seattle inventors thought up the idea for the novelty glasses way back in 1990. Back then the big loops in the nines created a very prosperous decade followed by even more convenient zeroes in the new millenium.

As it has turned out, the increasing use of knock-off glasses bought at party shops and street corners from Times Square to the Space Needle have killed all the profit these two geniuses collected over the years. It’s a sad turn of events, but interesting to realize that one forward thinking pair does still own patent 335,134 for “Novelty Eyeglass Frames”.

The Seattle Times has a very interesting feature story on the pair here.