Futility Closet book ad

Spring Fever

http://www.google.com/patents/US2808807

Inventors Neil and William Winton patented this “parakeet exercise perch” in 1957, in hopes of improving bird morale:

Parakeets are fast becoming common household pets and one of the first objectives of the new owner of a parakeet is to teach the parakeet to utter words that will amuse the owner thereof. …

An object of the present invention is to provide an exercising perch which will facilitate getting a parakeet in a cheerful state of mind so as he will talk or chatter more profusely.

The coil is designed so that “when a parakeet alights on any one of the coils, it will bounce up and down, sway with the weight of the bird, and oscillate back and forth.” The cage-mounted version shown here is only one option; the Wintons also envisioned a free-standing model and one that can be mounted on a wall (which is “entertaining to a parakeet possessing the ability to nose dive through a sleeve member”).

I don’t know how the parakeets responded. If they conquer the earth someday, perhaps they’ll give each of us a trampoline.