Saturday, October 16, 2010

Book - Chicken Egg; Egg Chicken?

雞蛋, 蛋雞?

Chicken lays eggs; eggs incubate chicks; that’s the law of nature. As to the question of which came first, chicken or egg? Since elementary school, I had already heard of it, only that all these years I had never analyzed it.

So, while the whim lasts, let me hereby publish my ‘grand’ stance!
First off, I want to make it clear that this question of chicken first or egg first is, in itself, flawed. Think about it, duck, goose, bird, and for that matter, all fowls, or perhaps all egg-laying species like snake, dinosaur, or turtle; they all have this ‘first, later’ situation. So, why chicken only? Why not turtle?

Back to topic, the supporters of ‘chicken first’ viewpoint contend that the egg must be first formed inside the chicken before it can materialize. Therefore, per their rationale, without the chicken, there will be no eggs. Furthermore, if the supporters are religious to boot, they will obviously believe that all creatures, great and small, were created by God. Just like the human race, Adam and Eve came first, only then came their billions of progeny. What more a mere chicken?

As for the supporters of ‘egg first’ viewpoint, they believe that all life on earth either evolved from marine micro-organisms or from various unicellular organisms. Some say the humans were originally a kind of marine animals. When they got on land, they underwent metamorphosis, and in the process developed four legs, duly becoming land animals. To survive in their new environment, they evolved and gradually learned to stand upright. Over time, they became the Neanderthals. And later? Need you ask? Therefore, supporters believe that the egg evolved from a micro-organism, first as an ovum, later as an egg with shell. When life inside the egg grows into a chick, it cracks the shell and gets out.

Both the above viewpoints have their own merits. I have no religious faith, nor am I knowledgeable on anthropology, so to me, both viewpoints are credible but doubts remain. Since no definite conclusion can be had, let’s look at it from a different angle, using a different method to get to the bottom of it!

One day, in a certain preschool classroom…

Teacher asked: “Class, who do think came first, chicken or the egg? Raise your hand to answer.”

At hearing the teacher’s question, the children started talking animatedly among themselves. After considering, four-year old Ne Ne raised her hand, and said: “Chicken!”

Teacher: “Ne Ne, Why?”

Ne Ne: “I’ve seen Mama cut open a chicken.”

Teacher:” Haha! What’s that got to do with this?”

Ne Ne: “I saw…an egg…inside the chicken’s tummy!”

Teacher: “That’s no unusual. But it doesn’t mean chicken came first ya!”

Ne Ne: “Why not? Chicken’s tummy has egg, but I’ve cracked open an egg before….inside, it’s all yellow. No chicken!”

Teacher: “…..”

Not only was the teacher lost for words by Ne Ne’s answer, I was too.
As always, a child’s purity is precious!

So, I believe the chicken came first!
 pp98 -99

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