Which Came First The Chicken Or The Egg?

This week, I have my first guest blogger.  When my book, “Which Came First?” was published in April, a friend said, “I’d like to blog on the topic of ‘which came first’.”  So, I’d like to introduce  you to my good friend and neighbor, Paul Brown, and his answer to the age-old question!


Paul grew up in Lewisville, Texas.  He’s an airline pilot, a football/basketball/baseball coach, husband to wife, Cheryl (who won’t let him get chickens),  and father to Evan, Kyle, and Amie. His favorite activities include watching sports, hunting, fishing, anything outdoors, and visiting with his neighbors, Janet and Jeff.


Which Came First the Chicken or the Egg? by Paul Brown

Throughout the history of mankind, one question has puzzled even the greatest of thinkers: Which came first, the chicken or the egg? The first known documentation of this discussion dates all the way back to the days of Aristotle, but I’m sure it had been contemplated even before his time. Unfortunately, Aristotle came to the conclusion that both the chicken and the egg must have existed at the same time, so he isn’t much help.



Some in the scientific community, have recently provided what they believe is a definitive answer to our question. Scientists have identified a unique protein (found only in a chicken’s ovaries) that is required to speed up the production of the eggshell so that it can be laid within 24 hours of fertilization. Without this protein, no egg. And without a chicken, no protein. Hence, the chicken has to come first for there to be a chicken egg.


Photo by Paul Brown of Corinth, Texas

However, other scientists have pointed out that the chicken is not a natural species, but a hybrid of multiple species of birds. At one point in time, two birds with different DNA, that were not chickens, got together and produced a bird different from either parent. And then this new bird got together with another new bird and they made a new bird. This happened hundreds if not thousands of times. Eventually this process created the chicken as we know it, which was hatched from an egg. So, the egg came first.


Photo by Paul Brown of Corinth, Texas

So there you have it. It is clear that the egg came first. Or maybe it was the chicken. Or maybe Aristotle was correct and they both existed from the beginning at the same time.


Fun Chicken Facts:

There are about 25 billion chickens in the world, more than any other bird species.

Chickens are omnivores. The eat seeds and small insects, but will also prey on mice and small lizards along with other small animals.

Chickens can know who you are. They can recognize up to 100 individual faces.

Chickens can communicate with one another. Mother hens even communicate with their chicks while they are still in the egg.

Chickens can’t taste sweetness, but they can taste saltiness.

Chickens can fly, but not for very long distances or time. The longest recorded chicken flight is 13 seconds.

Chickens dance. The dance a rooster does is called tidbitting.

The fear of chickens is called Alektorophobia.


It’s All In The Name

In a week, my first grandchild is due to be born.  It’s a boy, but I can’t tell you his name because my son, Ryan, and daughter-in-law, Paige, haven’t told.  They want to see him first before they make the final name decision.  I think this is so wise.


By keeping the potential names a secret, they don’t have to endure listening to everyone else’s opinions on the subject.  Because they are the parents, and they are the ones who get to choose.  Once they see the little guy, they will know which of the names they are considering actually suit him the best.

A few months back, they asked me what “grandmother” name I would like to be called by this new little one when he gets old enough.  I hadn’t thought about it and didn’t know how to answer the question so I said I would need to think it over.


I did a Google search to see what my choices were and what other grandmothers liked to be called.  Oh my, that didn’t help one bit.  There were so many!  Here’s just a sampling of the many grandmother monikers I found in my search:

Bamaw, Bammaw

Big Mom or Big Mama


Dama , Dammaw

GadGee, Gadgi Gadgy, Gadgie

GaMa, Gamma

Gammi, Gammie, Gammy, Gami



Ganni, Ganny, Gani



Gommie, Gommy

Gram, Grams

Gramma, Grama

Grammie, Grammy


Gran, Gran-Gran



Grandama, Grandgran

Grandma, Grandmama


Grandmother, Grandnan





Granny, Grannie



Ma, Maw

Mamaw, Mammaw


Mammy, Mammie

Marmi, Marme, Marmee

MawMaw, Mawmaw


Mema, MeMa, Meema, MeMaw

MeMo, MeeMo, Mimo

MeeMee, MeMe, MiMi

Mima, Mimaw


Mimmy, Mimsy

MoMa, MoMaw, MoMo

Mom Mom, Mom-Mom



Mum, Mums

Mumsy, Mumsey

Nama, Namma

Nana, Nanna

Nanny, Nannie


NeNe, NiNi

Ninny, Ninni


Nona, Nonna

Noni, NoNi, NoNee

Nonni, Nonny

Ona, Onna


I asked one of my close friends (who has seven grandchildren) what she thought I should be called.  She said, “It really doesn’t matter what you want to be called because the oldest grandchild chooses what you’re called anyway.”

She was right.  In my family, I was the oldest grandchild on my paternal side.  My grandmother’s name was Harriet and as a very little girl, I tried to call her “Grandma Harriet.”  I couldn’t say her full name and it came out as “Grandma Hut.”  She thought that was just a hoot and insisted that all the later grandchildren call her “Grandma Hut” too.  Yep, the oldest grandchild had chosen her name.


After thinking about it for a while, I decided to just go with the traditional “Grandma” for now and see what name my soon-to-be-born grandson chooses to call me.  Because isn’t that my role as a grandmother…to simply celebrate his very existence and enjoy the miracle of this new little person?


Author’s note:  If you have grandchildren, I’d love to hear what they call you.  Did the oldest decide on your “grandparent” name?   What did you call your grandparents?