Posts Tagged ‘patents’

Patent Hall of Shame: Saying Goodbye Game

Posted on June 22, 2011 by

Even the most patent friendly amongst us have come across patents that give them pause. Next up in our continuing series on crazy, bizarre, and downright funny patents is US Patent No. 5,256,068, directed to a “Saying Goodbye Game.” Since it is challenging to help a child understand and cope with the death of a loved one, this patent is directed to a good-bye game allowing adults to play the game with children and help the children overcome their grief – and it’s economical in cost to manufacture, too! It comes with a little shovel, a tape cassette player (!) for playing proper funeral music, and a coffin with a dead body doll. Everything you need to pretend you’re burying someone, neatly laid out in Figures 1-8:

My first impression at reading this patent was that this is completely crazy. But then if I think of how hard it would be to have to help a little child deal with the unexpected death of a loved one, and I wonder how many tools are actually out there. Sure, there are millions of articles on the Internet and that one Sesame Street episode where Big Bird has to deal with the death of Mr. Hooper… But I can’t see handing a parent a stack of literature to wade through as they’re dealing with their own grief and that of their child’s. So, as with most of the patents in the Hall of Shame, I started with a snicker but had to conclude that this isn’t such a crazy thing to patent after all. (… Still. A toy tombstone?!)


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