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The straw was first "invented" by a barman who, after getting tired of wiping a customer's lipstick off of his glasses (there were no dishwashers back then either so washing glasses was already a chore) decided to put a blade of rye grass - or possibly sugar cane, in the lady's glass. Rye grass became common untill 1888, when Marvin Stone patented the spiral winding process to manufacture the first paper drinking straws, which eventually evolved into plastics and bendable varieties...