Why Did the Chicken Cross the Road? Answers from the World's Thinkers
From the 'net, with some new ones by The Pathology Guy.
Douglas Adams: 42.
Aristotle: To actualize its potential. It is the nature of chickens to cross roads.
Roseanne Barr: Urrrrrp. What chicken?
Ludwig van Beethoven: What? Speak up.
Bodhidharma: If you ask this question, you deny your own chicken-nature.
George Bush: To face a thousand points of headlights.
Julius Caesar: To come, to see, to conquer.
John Calvin: It was predestined.
Candide: To cultivate its garden.
Bill Clinton: Define "road".
Johnny Cochran: The chicken never crossed the road. Some chicken-hating, genocidal, lying public official moved the road right under the chicken's feet while he was practicing his golf swing and thinking about his family.
Colonel Sanders: I missed one?
Joseph Conrad: Mistah Chicken, he dead.
Howard Cosell: It may very well have been one of the most astonishing events to grace the annals of history. An historic, unprecedented avian biped with the temerity to attempt such an Herculean achievement formerly relegated to Homo sapien pedestrians is truly a remarkable occurrence.
Salvador Dali: The Fish.
Charles Darwin: It was the logical next step after coming down from the trees.
Charles Darwin (revisited): Chickens, over great periods of time, have been naturally selected in such a way that they are now genetically disposed to cross roads.
Thomas Dequincy: Because it ran out of opium.
Jacques Derrida: What is the difference? The chicken was merely deferring from one side of the road to other. And how do we get the idea of the chicken in the first place? Does it exist outside of language?
Jacques Derrida (revisited): Any number of contending discourses may be discovered within the act of the chicken crossing the road, and each interpretation is equally valid as the authorial intent can never be discerned, because structuralism is DEAD, DAMMIT, DEAD!
James Dean: Because it was chicken.
Rene Descartes: It had sufficient reason to believe it was dreaming anyway.
Emily Dickinson: Because it could not stop for death.
Bob Dylan: How many roads must one chicken cross?
Albert Einstein: Whether the chicken crossed the road or the road crossed the chicken depends upon your frame of reference.
TS Eliot: Weialala leia / Wallala leialala.
TS Eliot (revisited): Do I dare to cross the road?
T.S. Eliot (revisited again): It's not that they cross, but that they cross like chickens.
Ralph Waldo Emerson: It didn't cross the road; it transcended it.
Epicurus: For pleasure.
Paul Erdos: It was forced to do so by the chicken-hole principle.
Louis Farrakhan: The road, you will see, represents the black man. The chicken "crossed" the black man in order to trample him and keep him down.
Basil Fawlty: Oh, don't mind that chicken. It's from Barcelona.
Pierre de Fermat: I just don't have room here to give the full explanation.
Gerald R. Ford: It probably fell from an airplane and couldn't stop its forward momentum.
Michel Foucault: It did so because the discourse of crossing the road left it no choice-the police state was oppressing it.
Sigmund Freud: The chicken was obviously female and obviously interpreted the pole on which the crosswalk sign was mounted as a phallic symbol of which she was envious, selbstverst ndlich.
Sigmund Freud (revisited): The fact that you are at all concerned about why the chicken crossed the road reveals your underlying sexual insecurity.
Robert Frost: To cross the road less traveled by.
Robert Frost: Because two roads diverged in a wood, and it, being a chicken, crossed the one less traveled by, which has made no difference whatsoever to the chicken -- or to anyone else for that matter.
Zsa Zsa Gabor: It probably crossed to get a better look at my legs, which, thank goodness, are good, dahling.
Bill Gates: I have just released the new Chicken 2000, which will not only cross roads, but will lay eggs, file your important documents, and balance your checkbook. Of course, you will have to purchase Microsoft Road.
Gilligan: The traffic started getting rough; the chicken had to cross. If not for the plumage of its peerless tail, the chicken would be lost. The chicken would be lost!
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe: The eternal hen-principle made it do it.
Stephen Jay Gould: It is possible that there is a sociobiological explanation for it, but we have been deluged in recent years with sociobiological stories despite the fact that we have little direct evidence about the genetics of behavior, and we do not know how to obtain it for the specific behaviors that figure most prominently in sociobiological speculation.
Grandpa: In my day, we didn't ask why the chicken crossed the road. Someone told us that the chicken had crossed the road, and that was good enough for us.
H. R. Haldeman: I can't recall.
Thomas Hardy: Some blessed hope, whereof it knew, and I was unaware.
Werner Heisenberg: We are not sure which side of the road the chicken was on, but it was moving very fast.
Ernest Hemingway: To die. In the rain.
Heraclitus: A chicken cannot cross the same road twice.
Adolf Hitler: It needed Lebensraum.
David Hume: Out of custom and habit.
Saddam Hussein: This was an unprovoked act of rebellion and we were quite justified in dropping fifty tons of nerve gas on it.
Doug Hofstadter: To seek explication of the correspondence between appearance and essence through the mapping of the external road-object onto the internal road-concept.
Saddam Hussein: This was an unprovoked act of rebellion, and we were quite justified in dropping 50 tons of nerve gas on it.
Lee Iacocca: It found a better car, which was on the other side of the road.
John Paul Jones: It has not yet begun to cross!
James Joyce: To forge in the smithy of its soul the uncreated conscience of its race.
Carl Jung: The confluence of events in the cultural gestalt necessitated that individual chickens cross roads at this historical juncture, and therefore synchronicitously brought such occurrences into being.
Immanuel Kant: Because it would have this be a universal law.
Martin Luther King: It had a dream.
Martin Luther King: I envision a world where all chickens will be free to cross roads without having their motives called into question.
James Tiberius Kirk: To boldly go where no chicken has gone before.
Stan Laurel: I'm sorry, Ollie. It escaped when I opened the run.
Timothy Leary: It was the only trip that the establishment would let it take.
Leda: Are you sure it wasn't Zeus dressed up as a chicken? He's into that kind of thing, you know.
Gottfried von Leibniz: In this best possible world, the road was made for it to cross.
H.P. Lovecraft: To futilely attempt escape from the dark powers which even then pursued it, hungering after the stuff of its soul!
Douglas MacArthur: In order to return.
Machiavelli: So that its subjects will view it with admiration, as a chicken which has the daring and courage to boldly cross the road, but also with fear, for whom among them has the strength to contend with such a paragon of avian virtue? In such a manner is the princely chicken's dominion maintained.
Machiavelli (revisited): The end of crossing the road justifies whatever motive there was.
Malcolm X: Because it would get across that road by any means necessary.
Groucho Marx: Chicken? What's all this talk about chicken? Why, I had an uncle who thought he was a chicken. My aunt almost divorced him, but we needed the eggs.
Karl Marx: To escape the bourgeois middle-class struggle. It was a historical inevitability.
Gregor Mendel: To get various strains of roads.
John Stuart Mill: For the greater good.
John Milton: To justify the ways of God to men.
Fox Mulder: You saw it cross the road with your own eyes. How many more chickens have to cross the road before you believe it?
Alfred E. Neumann: What? Me worry?
Sir Isaac Newton: Chickens at rest tend to stay at rest. Chickens in motion tend to cross the road.
Moses: Know ye that it is unclean to eat the chicken that has crossed the road.
Moses: And the LORD spake unto the chicken, "Thou shalt cross the road." And the chicken crossed the road.
Richard Nixon: The chicken did not cross the road. I repeat, the chicken did NOT cross the road.
Jack Nicholson: 'Cause it [censored] wanted to. That's the [censored] reason.
Camille Paglia: It was drawn by the subconscious chthonian power of the feminine which men can never understand, to cross the road and focus itself on its task. Hens are not capable of doing this-their minds do not work that way. Feminism tries vainly to pretend there is no real difference between them, falsely following Rousseau. But de Sade has proved....
Thomas Paine: Out of common sense.
Michael Palin: Nobody expects the banished inky chicken!
The Pathology Guy: To be loved. To find meaning. To find an answer for death.
Paul of Tarsus: A chicken does not understand its own actions.
Wolfgang Pauli: There already was a chicken on the other side of the road.
Pyrrho the Skeptic: What road?
J. Danforth Quayle: It saw a potatoe.
Ayn Rand: It was crossing the road because of its own rational choice to do so. There cannot be a collective unconscious; desires are unique to each individual.
Georg Friedrich Riemann: The answer appears in Dirichlet's lectures.
Saddam Hussein: Give me ten minutes with the chicken and I'll find out.
Jean-Paul Sartre: In order to act in good faith and be true to itself, the chicken found it necessary to cross the road.
Mr. Scott: 'Cos ma wee transporter beam was na functioning properly. Ah canna work miracles, Captain.
Jerry Seinfeld: Why does anyone cross a road? I mean, why doesn't anyone ever think to ask, "What the heck was this chicken doing walking around all over the place, anyway?"
William Shakespeare: I don't know why, but methinks I could rattle off a hundred-line soliloquy without much ado.
Sisyphus: Was it pushing a rock, too?
B.F. Skinner: Because the external influences which had pervaded its sensorium from birth had caused it to develop in such a fashion that it would tend to cross roads, even while believing these actions to be of its own free will.
Socrates: To pick up some hemlock at the corner druggist.
The Sphinx: You tell me.
Oliver Stone: The question is not, "Why did the chicken cross the road?" Rather, it is, "Who was crossing the road at the same time, whom we overlooked in our haste to observe the chicken crossing?"
John Sununu: The Air Force was only too happy to provide the transportation, so quite understandably the chicken availed himself of the opportunity.
Mr. T: If you saw me coming, you'd cross the road, too!
Teveyah: As the Good Book says... Well I'm sure it says something in there about a chicken and a road.
Margaret Thatcher: There was no alternative.
J.R.R. Tolkein: The chicken, sunlight coruscating off its radiant yellow- white coat of feathers, approached the dark, sullen asphalt road and scrutinized it intently with its obsidian-black eyes. Every detail of the thoroughfare leapt into blinding focus: the rough texture of the surface, over which countless tires had worked their relentless tread through the ages; the innumerable fragments of stone embedded within the lugubrious mass, perhaps quarried from the great pits where the Sons of Man labored not far from here; the dull black asphalt itself, exuding those waves of heat which distort the sight and bring weakness to the body; the other attributes of the great highway too numerous to give name. And then it crossed it.
Kilgore Trout: Why not?
Mark Twain: The news of its crossing has been greatly exaggerated.
Kurt Vonnegut: There is no "why", there only "is". So it goes.
George Washington: Actually, it crossed the Delaware with me back in 1776. But most history books don't reveal that I bunked with a birdie during the duration.
John Wesley: It exercised its own free will.
Mae West: I invited it to come up and see me sometime.
Walt Whitman: To cluck the song of itself.
Ludwig Wittgenstein: The possibility of "crossing" was encoded into the objects "chicken" and "road", and circumstances came into being which caused the actualization of this potential occurrence.
Henny Youngman: Take this chicken...please!
Zeno of Elea: To prove it could never reach the other side.
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