The comedian Groucho Marx once said, "It was a very brave man who ate the first oyster!".
Well, it's a funny remark, and gets a laugh.But would it be true?I have written,in other posts,that Mankind was forever asking "What if I did this,what would happen?".
The curiosity of Man has no bounds, and a million or so years ago Man was asking another question, "Why?".
Like all Primates, Man is a copier; he watches and learns.One Man would not have walked in to the sea, picked up an oyster, broke open the shell, and ate the oyster. No, many men would have watched the birds. How the sea-birds picked up sea shells and dropped them from a great height to smash the shell open.
But, even with a tiny brain, primitive Man was not stupid! He would have seen birds eat things before; and he tried to eat the same fruit or berries, and they made him vomit.
So Man would watch other animals.
The Sea Otter has a clever little trick. He lays on his back, floating in the sea, and carries a flat stone in his front paws.He puts the stone on his chest, and cracks open an Oyster shell by banging it repeatedly on the stone.
So, it would not be one Man who ate the first Oyster. It would be many men watching, and copying.
And what about primitive women? They were just as curious as the men.
At that time, Mankind wouldn't know how to "make" fire,but they knew how to use natural fire.They knew it gave warmth and light. They learnt how to "control" fire, by keeping it in a ring of stones. Then the group could sit by the fire and keep warm.
Primitive Man had by this time learnt of many foods besides fruit and berries. They had learnt that seeds were a good food. One type of seed was far more "bountiful" than any other; grass seed.
But eating the seed just as it was gathered was not so good. So the women learnt that if they pounded the seed with a stone, and mixed it with water, the "paste" was better and easier to eat.
It wouldn't be very long before some of this "paste" would accidentally "drop" on to a hot stone from the fire.
What a waste! It could't be eaten because it was hot!
But, the eternal question, "What if?"
What if I ate it after it had gone cold?
Primitive Mankind had discovered the most eaten food in the world today. Bread!
Brown bread and butter, with Oysters, and Guinness Stout. That,my friends, is "food fit for the Gods"!