Bubbe's Medicine

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 voice comes:

"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?"

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