Forget the fiscal imbalance. Ottawa inventor Paul Kind has found the solution to a real Canadian problem, one that bedevils thousands of citizens every day.
UsingKind's Rimroller, it's easy to roll up the rim on a disposable coffee cup to check for a winning number. With Tim Hortons promising more than 30 million potential prizes in its 2007 contest, that's a lot of broken fingernails and chunks of wax wedged between the teeth.
"It couldn't be easier," the Rimroller website says."Grip the Rimroller by the thumb and finger spots, push it down over the lip of the empty contest cup, and pull it straight upwards. The rim will be unrolled!"
Rachel Douglas, director of public affairs for Tim Hortons, has one of the devices on her desk.
"It absolutely works," she said. And while the chain won't retail the Rimroller — it only sells its own products — "I'm thrilled with his innovation," she said.
The Rimroller, which took Kind many trials to perfect, is made of plastic and doubles as a keyring. It's expected to go on sale soon at Lee Valley stores for about $2.50 — about the price of two large coffees.
But there's always a catch.
"The only downside is that we can't guarantee a winning cup every time," the website said.
There's a catch for Douglas, too. "I'm not allowed to win," she said.
This isn't Kind's first venture into products that ease the frustrations of daily life. He also designed the Bookhug, a holder that keeps a book open, and theHandyfold, which folds letters neatly into three sections so they'll fit into an envelope.