A mechanical rice picker is a device that is used in agriculture on Earth, at least according to James T. Kirk, when trying to explain away Spock's ears to a police officer in 1930s New York.

After stealing some clothes in order to fit in with the era, Kirk and Spock were apprehended by a police officer. Kirk told the officer that Spock was of Chinese descent, and got his head stuck in a rice picker as a child. A plastic surgeon was able to save Spock's life, but had the unfortunate side effect of pointed ears. (TOS episode: "The City on the Edge of Forever"; novel: Crucible: The Fire and the Rose)

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