How a 1st Graders’s morbid answer to a simple riddle has stunned the internet
The puzzle reads: “I am the beginning of everything, the end of everywhere. I’m the beginning of eternity, the end of time & space. What am I?”world Updated: Jan 07, 2018 17:34 IST
Often what children say is either silly or funny - but sometimes their response can be too deep and profound for their age. This is what happened when a teacher in California posed a simple riddle to his first-grade students as part of the “puzzle of the week” series.
Bret Turner, a teacher in Albany, California, asked: “I am the beginning of everything, the end of everywhere. I’m the beginning of eternity, the end of time & space. What am I?”
The first guess from one of my 1st graders was "death" and such an awed, somber, reflective hush fell over the class that I didn’t want to tell them that actually the answer is the letter e, which just seemed so banal in the moment pic.twitter.com/7sYFxHNcZk— Bret Turner (@bretjturner) January 2, 2018
The answer to the question is “e”, but the reply he got from one of his students led to an “awed, somber, reflective hush” across the class.
“Death”, said one of his students.
Stunned by the child’s answer, Turner took to Twitter on Wednesday to share his experience.
“I didn’t want to tell them that actually the answer is the letter e, which just seemed so banal in the moment,” he wrote on Twitter.
His tweet has since gone viral, with more than 101k retweets and 290k likes so far.
“Before I finally revealed the ‘correct’ answer to the riddle, to a largely unimpressed audience, I fielded other guesses that continued along a similarly existential vein,” Turner later tweeted. “There was ‘NOT everything,’ ‘all stuff,’ ‘the end,’ and maybe my favorite, ‘nothingthing.’”
Before I finally revealed the "correct" answer to the riddle, to a largely unimpressed audience, I fielded other guesses that continued along a similarly existential vein. There was "NOT everything," "all stuff," "the end," and maybe my favorite, "nothingthing."— Bret Turner (@bretjturner) January 3, 2018
I’m considering telling the kids tomorrow that a tweet about them went viral, and given their facility with the internets, I expect their response will be "sure but did it go SUPERviral" and "just how many retweets are we talking about here" and "can I go to the bathroom"— Bret Turner (@bretjturner) January 4, 2018
What followed was a rather philosophical debate on Twitter.
Sample some tweets here.
The kid isn't morbid. Just smart and thoughtful. Simply because you were not at that age means nothing. Glad you are moving it along as you should.— AuroraEats (@AuroraEats) January 4, 2018
"E" is also for existentialism— Bobbie Bees (@BobbieBees) January 3, 2018
Sounds like a Budding Realist to Me.— Watchstander (@msg_shades) January 4, 2018
Existentialism at such an early age is mesmerizing. Kids nowadays have a deeper feeling of things and their hypersensitivity needs to be taken into account when being supportive.— Leo Soler (@BooleanCorp) January 4, 2018
First Published: Jan 07, 2018 17:30 IST