Monday 29 June 2009

Why did the Chicken Cross the Road

I have been giving some thought to this age-old question, aided and abetted by (and with apologies to) the following:

John Wayne
A bird’s gadda do whadda bird’s gadda do

Inspector Morse
Don’t be silly, Lewis. Get another pint in and stop worrying about chickens. This is a murder enquiry.

Dylan Thomas
Morning. On the side of the tar-black, car-black road Dai Dungheap dreamed of his wives; feather-arsed, feather-brained, clucking and pecking their way through mindless, worm-important lives. Blind Captain Cat, sitting at the window of his snug cottage with his early morning tea-and-rum, bible-dark, treacle-thick, half-heard the ‘Cockadoodledoo’ as the fowl fluffed out his sleek, green-necked, sheen-necked plumage, self-important and shiny as an admiral’s hat, and crowing loud as a travelling preacher, began to cross…………..

William Shakespeare
Thus do I cross here, as the plot doth thicken:
In sleep an eagle; waking, a mere chicken

Jane Austen
It is a truth universally acknowledged that a chicken in possession of a good road must be in want of a reason to cross it.

Rudyard Kipling
If you can cross each unforgiving highway
With sixty seconds-worth of distance run
You’ll earn the right to crow “I did it my way”-
And what is more, you’ll be a chook, my son.

Tony Blair
I must tell you - New Labour – new chicken – new road. That’s what we mean by a caring society, a society where a chicken doesn’t need to give a reason for crossing a road, a society where we the Government have earmarked billions of pounds over the next five years to provide a new road system for our chickens – yes – our chickens - to cross………….

Dans ce pays ci c’est necessaire qu’une poule traversait la rue de temps en temps, pour encourager les autres.

Genesis, 1
In the beginning God created the Road. And the Road was without form, and void.
And God said ‘Let there be chooks: and there were chooks.
Male and female made he them. And God saw that it was good
And God spake to the chooks: Thus spake the Lord God:
O chooks – eat not of the Tree of Knowledge which groweth on the other side. Cross thee not the road, for the wrath of the Lord thy God is mighty
But the chooks did cross the road: And the chooks did eat of the Tree of Knowledge
And The Lord God spake thus unto the chooks, saying:
What is this that thou hast done?
In sorrow shall thou bring forth eggs, and the extra large ones thereof shall make thine eyes water, yea verily.
And thou shalt peck about in the ground for evermore, and feast on worms, thee and thy children and thy children’s children, yea even unto the lands of Colonel Sanders………………….

John Betjeman
Mrs Partlet crossed the High Road,
Back to comfy flat in Sheen;
Frozen chicken in her basket,
Safely wrapped in polythene.

G.K. Chesterton
Before the Romans came to Rye or out to Severn strode
The rolling English chicken crossed the rolling English Road.

Cole Porter
Hens do it; Cocks do it;
Even Orpingtons or Wyandottes do it
Let’s do it;
Let’s cross that road

Each batt’ry hen, now and then, does it
If let out from its bed
A bantam cock, if in shock does it
And a Rhode Island Red

You’ll find a point-of lay pullet does it,
Even Chanticleer like a bullet does it
Let’s do it!
Let’s cross that road!

Robbie Burns
Wee cluckin’, feathert cacklin’ Beastie
O what a panic’ s in thy breastie
Thou need tae start awa sae hastie
Tae cross yon street.
Aye, me, I’ll gang tae rin and chase thee,
Thee for tae eat!.

Geoffrey Chaucer (from the Cackleberry Tales)
And smale foweles maken melodye
That slepeth all the nyghte wyth open ye
So makyth them nature yn hir corages.
Thann longen hennes to goe on pilgrimage,

Winston Churchill
Some chicken! some road!

Anne Robinson
You are the weakest chook. Goodbye.

Margaret Thatcher
This chicken’s not for turning!

Ogden Nash
I am often asked for a reason as to why the chicken crossed the road.
I wish I knowed.

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
WATSON “Is there any other point to which you would wish to draw my attention.”
HOLMES “To the curious incident of the chicken.”
WATSON “But Holmes - the chicken wasn’t there. It was across the road”
HOLMES “That, my dear Watson, was the curious incident.”

Albert Einstein
Where e = the energy used in crossing the road, m = the width of the road in metres and c = the circumference of the chicken.

The EU Agriculture Commission – Directive EU/7/1995/D24T99XK/EL56 Part 67SD3 Section 21
A summary of rules concerning the crossing of roads by chickens. For the full directive see Publication EU/12/2000/495720937/fr/645/ay (HMSO 6 languages 1854 pp price £1450 inc VAT)

A chicken (henceforth known as the appellant) shall be defined as any live fowl of the genus cluckus domesticus indigenous to any sovereign member state or colony protectorate commonwealth dependancy or satrapy thereof(for non-indigenous fowls and other feathered livestock see Section 37) over the age of six weeks and either male or female (for capons see section 132 clause 544a) whether in the food chain or no subject to its meeting all requirements contained in Directive 272/ SDFVW723/RVWEKJ4W3RWJ section 27 clause 533a and regardless of whether or not the appellant aforesaid has an egg-laying capability within the meaning of Directive 164A235M 2E43/2HH/128 part3 but excluding in all cases domestic fowls other than ducks geese swans larks orioles and other edible avia imported to or exported from the United Kingdom and its colonies dependencies and protectorates due to the veto imposed by the government of Her Britannic Majesty and any emergency directives currently in force under the Salmonella Protection (eggs) Scheme and also pigeons whether wild or domesticated but it should be especially noted that a parrot is not a chicken within the meaning of this Directive

A road shall be defined as any Motorway Autostrada Autobahn Route Nationale class A road class B road lane track public footpath or other highway river canal stream or other waterway situated wholly or in part in one or more member states and used for the transport of persons goods livestock cattle and other commodities always excepting substances prohibited under EU or national law but not excepting the transportation of cannabis within the national borders of Holland

Permitted reasons include any lawful desire on the part of any such appellant(s) as defined above to traverse any road to reach the other side of said road always assuming that any such journey is not commenced during the hours of darkness as laid down by the governments of each member state and that any such journey does not involve or include the crossing of national boundaries within the Union and does not involve any fowls as defined above crossing any boundaries into or out of non-member countries states commonwealths (see Directive 1 – exports section 7 livestock and Directive 2 –imports section 7 livestock and section 23 clauses 678-932 quarantine regulations for non EU fowls) and that any such traverse is conducted in a proper manner by the appellants aforesaid subject to or within local or national traffic rules regulations bylaws and emergency strictures as may then in force and providing always that any licences permits visas permissions passports and other documentation as may be required as laid down by the Commission in Directive 11/2000/549/VFRWEV8ASCQ6567C have been obtained at least six calendar months before the commencement of any proposed journey ……………………..

J.K. Rowling - from Harry Potter and the Chicken Soup of Mama Mephistofiles
The chicken crossed the road to where Harry, Ron and Hermione were standing outside the moonlit gates of Hogwart’s Academy. Harry could clearly see that there was something strangely different about this chicken, but couldn’t for the life of him think what it was. It wasn’t until the bird produced a crumpled cigarette from under its wing, stuck it in its beak, and gruffly demanded a light, that Harry realised who it was. “Cockamamie!” he cried joyfully………………………..

W.S. Gilbert from “The Chikado”
The chicken that crosses the road, tra-la
Has nothing to do with the case.
I refuse to take under my wing, tra-la
A horrible feathery thing, tra-la
With a satisfied smile on its face,
(chorus) With a satisfied smile on its face

And that’s what I mean when I say or repeat
To Hell with the chicken that crosses the street
(chorus) The chicken that crosses, the chicken that crosses
The chicken that crosses the street.

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
By the side of Emmi- Leven
By the oil-spattered hard shoulder
Stood a chicken, feathers draggled
Daughter of the far Rhode Island
Far from home was this poor chicken
Far from lovely clean Rhode Island
O’er the shining Big-Sea water.
Standing by the Emmi-leven
Past her roared the mighty diesels
Past her screamed the Ford Fiestas
Middle-management Fiestas
Talking ever on their mobiles
Never seeing a poor chicken
Tired and hungry, heading homeward
Frightened by the Emmi-leven
Frightened by the fox behind her
In the dark and gloomy pine trees
Coming nearer, ever nearer
Looking for a chicken breakfast.
So the chook in desperation
Steps out on the Emmi-leven
On the busy Emmi-leven
Splat! The noise she made when dying.
Swallowed up by roaring traffic.
Chicken flattened by the traffic
On the fearful Emmi-leven
Never more to see Rhode Island ( and so on, interminably)

Samuel Pepys
To Charing Cross to see the new fowl lately arrived from the Indies. These were being driven across the strand and into pens the further side thereof, and looked as cheerful as any fowl could do in that condition. And so to bed.

Monday 1 June 2009

Another fine mess......................?

Just a couple of amusing little things, but they’ve left me unsure whether to be worried for the future my country, or smug in that my opinions of those running it have been confirmed.

Item: We sold a book this morning. Called “ The Best of Laurel and Hardy” . Nothing unusual in that.


The buyer? HM Foreign and Commonwealth Office.

Item: – I must confess to having a giggle at the headline in yesterday’s Sunday Times, which read “ Gordon Brown wants Balls for Chancellor”.

And Arse for Foreign Secretary, Dick for Minister of Education, and Armpits for Minister of Health, no doubt. Is the man so arrogant that he thinks he can run the whole country on his own?