A few months ago ListVerse had a Top 11 of brain-twisting paradoxes. Among them was this fun one at #4:
Suppose there is a town with just one male barber; and that every man in the town keeps himself clean-shaven: some by shaving themselves, some by attending the barber. It seems reasonable to imagine that the barber obeys the following rule: He shaves all and only those men in town who do not shave themselves.Of course the #1 brain-twister is the age-old one of an irresistible force meeting immovable object. Like all mind-benders of this sort it is unanswerable since it would take an infinite amount of energy to be irresistible or immovable.
Under this scenario, we can ask the following question: Does the barber shave himself?
Asking this, however, we discover
that the situation presented is in fact impossible:
- If the barber does not shave himself, he must abide by the rule and shave himself.
- If he does shave himself, according to the rule he will not shave himself
But perhaps more importantly it was reported a few weeks ago that British scientists have "cracked" the greatest mystery of the chicken or egg. And the answer (with drum roll, please) is:
The ChickenIt has something to do with certain chemicals or proteins that control egg production which needs a chicken to exist. Here's a link to an article on MSNBC.
In case you are interested, it is reported in a scholarly paper with the exciting and enticing title of Structural Control Of Crystal Nuclei By An Eggshell Protein.