Sunday, April 19, 2009

Easter 2009

[posted by bkmarcus]

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Friday, April 03, 2009

rooster eggs

[posted by bkmarcus]

The term "rooster egg" has a new meaning for me.

Why would "rooster egg" have any meaning for me in the first place?

In an essay I wrote a few years ago, I mention "Uncle Raymond [who] is a famous logician. (Also a magician, a musician, and a mathematician. I'm not making this up. His stage name was Five-Ace Monty.)"

Most of his logic puzzles are fantastic. Some of his basic, introductory puzzles aren't his own, and these aren't always as great.

Here's one of them:

If a rooster lays an egg on the exact top point of a roof that slants off at 30° in one direction and 45° in the other, which side will the egg roll down?
Roosters don't lay eggs.

Yeah? So? I know roosters don't normally lay eggs, but the puzzle doesn't assert that they do. It asks a conditional question. What if a rooster laid an egg…

Obviously the whole thing annoyed me enough to stick with me three decades.

But now I have a new association with the term. Benjamin asked me if we could look for rooster eggs in the back yard.

Rooster eggs? Is this some wild-goose-chase term he learned in preschool? No, apparently it's a small child's misunderstanding of what he overhears and what he dimly remembers from a year ago.

"Is it Rooster yet?" he asked.

"Ah! No, my boy. You mean Easter. Easter eggs. And no, it's not Easter quite yet."

Postscript Nathalie points out that the basilisk (aka cockatrice) is born from a rooster's egg.

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