Necessity, that mother of invention

Aesop woke me up early, but not for the worm. That would be a German proverb, not the moral of our story. Aesop was telling me to ignore the birds chirping at 4:05 a.m., and go back to sleep for another hour. At that time we would meet to consider all pressing problems while the coffee brewed, like why my khaki pants aren't ironed.

Pressing Problems:

  1. Is the American Robin really the early bird?
  2. Why aren't there more words at the end of the alphabet that preschoolers can grasp? I mean, you are five. What do you know about "prune", "rude", "cube", "fume", "uncle", "ugly", "vase", "yolk", and "umpire"?
  3. What was that amazing book about raven intelligence I read many years ago? 
  4. Are crows as intelligent as ravens?
  5. How do crows learn?
  6. Why are there so many Aesop fables about crows?
  7. Are crows really smarter than most five year-olds?
  8. How totally awesome is this science video in the online New York Times of crows reenacting Aesop's fable about the crow and the pitcher and learning?
  9. The crows need to directly see the cause and effect to learn.
  10. What is Bernd Heinrich's new book release? 
  11. Is it still considered "mobbing" if only one crow harasses a hawk as we observed above the playground Friday?*
  12. If you arrange a flash mob, but only one tuba player shows up, what do you call the performance?
  13. Should I set up the ironing board in the living room and watch the rest of Ken Burns' "Dust Bowl"?
  14. Why can't I find a good IQ ranking for animals? Is a crow better able to learn and solve problems than an octopus?
  15. Does a sloth have S.C.T.? Is Sluggish Cognitive Tempo for real? Is it another invented diagnosis promoted by pharmaceutical companies to sell drugs still under patents? 
  16. How does a composer mark his score for sluggish cognitive tempo.

Oreo, the preschool rabbit.

*Crows do not get along with birds of prey, such as hawks, owls, and eagles. They will gather together to mob these birds if they can. Mobbing includes dive bombing, chasing, and harassing.

© 2014 Nancy L. Ruder


Photolera Claudinha said...

Octopus versus crow intelligence, excellent question! Both are amazingly capable animals. Crows have been observed to drop hardshelled food on the road, so the cars driving over it, would crack the shells. Cuttlefish have a unique network of millions of neuronal synaptic connections to change color & patterns in an instant at will. How do you know that the early bird proverb is of German origin? I come up with 1678, in a collection of proverbs by Brit John Ray. Couldn't find anything earlier than that. Love your musing, and by all means, the ironing board must always be up & ready. Too much hassle otherwise.

Collagemama said...

Claudia, I will bow to your 1678 English source for the proverb. I can't relocate what I found on 4/8 saying it was German, and obviously forgot to put in a link. Thanks for your animal IQ insights!

Kathleen said...

I am delighted and fascinated by the questions as well as the answers!