Yes, things will always need to be made smoother than they were before, and in whatever crazy future-world we wind up living in, Nicholson will be there to help you ensmoothen things. Shew. I was worried. "What of my jagged future-pieces, Nicholson?" I would shout. "Will you be there to help me de-burr, shape, and smoothen various objects in some unimaginable dystopian future when airships have umbrellas on them?" I would finish shouting.
Yes, the Nicholson File Co. of 1927 wanted us to be reassured of their continued file manufacture. And, to help you imagine such a crazy, smooth future, they've included a crystal ball vision of transatlantic flight. See?
Funny thing about files. I have one (possibly a Nicholson) that says "bastard" on it. So why's that? I had always suspected that it was related to the fact that there was a type of sword that was called a "bastard sword". I figured that files and swords are kind of similar. Maybe it was something to do with forging?
Wrong. The word "bastard" on it's own can mean "of abnormal or irregular size" (definition 7 in the link). This is how it came to mean "a child of irregular parentage". Back to files now. There are generally three grades of file coarseness. I say "generally" because you can geek out all day on files, but we're talking in generalities here. The three types are coarse, fine and an in-between one called a "bastard" cut. Here, "bastard" is used to describe the not-quite-rough-and-not-quite-smooth cut of the file. See?
As far as swords go, the usage is kind of similar. Swords are either long swords (like a knight would use - about 4 feet long) short swords (like a roman soldier would carry - about two feet long) and a neither-of-those lengths length, dun dun dunnnnnnn!... a "bastard sword". It just means "irregular" or "not like the others", or "not your typical length". It has nothing to do with what you shout at guys right before you hit them with it. There will be plenty of shouting and lots of swears in any sword battle, regardless of how long your sword is. Eventually, the term "bastard sword" came to be used for swords that were frikkin huge - like five feet long and twenty-five-ish pounds. Any guy running at you with one of those probably knows how you feel about him already. So, swearing was optional.
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