In the middle of a grand theatrical performance one of the leading
actors collapses, groaning, on stage. Responding to anxious requests
for help from the manager a concerned huddle soon develops around
him consisting, among others, of not a few eminent physicians who
happen to be present in the auditorium. As they cluster round
discussing possible diagnoses and treatments and the audience looks
on enthralled, a voice rings out from the balcony:
"Give him chicken soup!"
The figures on stage pay no attention and carry on with their
deliberations. For a second time the voice cries out:
"Give him some chicken soup!"
The discussions on stage continue, perhaps becoming somewhat more
heated, and more urgent. For a third time, louder than before, the
"Give the poor man some chicken soup!"
Exasperated, one of the figures on stage turns and addresses the
source of the voice, a small wizened Jewish grandmother:
"My good woman", he says, "This man is gravely ill. What on earth
could possibly be the benefit to him of plying him with chicken soup?"
All eyes turn to hear her response.
"And what harm?"