I am a closet paper clip collector. I keep my desk (and closet) stocked with a smorgasbord of all kinds (except plastic) from England, Germany, France, Italy, the USA and Japan (where the best are made). But I don’t go advertising my “hobby.” Some things, like paper clip collecting, are best kept to oneself (especially if that person collects animal paper clips — below). So, I was super surprised when David Cohen, a vintage paper dealer with a booth at the 25th Street Flea Market (between 6th and 7th Avenues) in New York, sent me a small, sealed antique envelope with a handful of the most unusual paper clips I’d ever seen. They are elegant in their simplicity, but dare I say it, they don’t clip paper very well. In any case, some products don’t live up to their functional promise but succeed at other things — this is a case in point.