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Rudy Reimer, who knew Professor Parsons intimately for many years, supplied this explanation to a typical Hardin ad. "The way I saw Hardin work this effect puzzled me very much at first. This is the old feather stunt. (We don't know if Mr. Reimer means "old" as then or now.) The feather Hardin used was the kind with which pillows are stuffed, the small downy type. Here is the effect in Hardin's hands and when I say it was impressive, would be stating it mildly.

"After a good deal of fluttering of the canary bird in the cage Hardin would finally manage to catch hold of him. This was to demonstrate that the bird was very much alive. Taking the feather, he would brush it in front of the bird's eyes several times, and then would put the feather near the claws of the bird so that it would take hold with its feet. When Hardin got the bird in position, the canary would hang in an upside down position as though it were dead. He could even roll it along the table top.

"Try this on a canary yourself. I don't know what the passing of a feather across the eyes does to them, the reaction of some birds is to go in a kind of a stupor, others will hang to the feather with no inclination to fly away. Cn

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