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There is a story that a man and not a man,

did see and not see a bird and not a bird,

Perched on a branch and not a branch,

And hit him and did not hit him with a rock and not a rock.

How is this possible?

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closed as primarily opinion-based by JMP, Sconibulus, Glorfindel, stack reader, Beastly Gerbil Jul 5 '17 at 16:04

Many good questions generate some degree of opinion based on expert experience, but answers to this question will tend to be almost entirely based on opinions, rather than facts, references, or specific expertise. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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    $\begingroup$ Were Schroedinger and Heisenberg involved in this somehow? $\endgroup$ – Xenocacia Jun 28 '17 at 2:04
  • $\begingroup$ No, Heisenberg is not involved in this riddle, good try though. $\endgroup$ – natural Jun 28 '17 at 2:05
  • $\begingroup$ Is it a dream? You dreamed about a man throwing a rock but in reality there were no actual physical objects. Just figments of your imagination. $\endgroup$ – stack reader Jun 28 '17 at 2:08
  • $\begingroup$ Nope, incorrect :), the answer is actually really quite simple, a story in itself. $\endgroup$ – natural Jun 28 '17 at 2:10
  • $\begingroup$ @natural ... Plato? Is that you? $\endgroup$ – Rubio Jun 28 '17 at 4:08
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A eunuch who did not see well saw a bat perched on a reed and threw a pumice stone at him which missed.

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    $\begingroup$ @natural Was this an unbelievably lucky guess? Or a very well known answer to a well known riddle? Or just that the question was too vague and pretty much anything would have been acceptable? $\endgroup$ – stack reader Jun 28 '17 at 4:22
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    $\begingroup$ This is an old riddle, apparently attributed to Plato, whose answer can be found online elsewhere pretty readily. $\endgroup$ – Rubio Jun 28 '17 at 6:49
  • $\begingroup$ I’ll concede/disclose that I have a dog in this fight, a horse in this race, a bird on this branch, a squirrel in this yard, a snake in the grass, etc., but … … … … … … … this whole answer seems a bit thin to me, and I especially don’t see how it even marginally satisfies the “And hit him” clause. $\endgroup$ – Peregrine Rook Jun 28 '17 at 17:29
  • $\begingroup$ @stackreader Have you never heard this riddle before? It's well known, yes, but this also seems to be the only answer that really fits properly. $\endgroup$ – Rand al'Thor Jul 5 '17 at 11:32
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A man and a woman were somewhere near a tree.  The man saw a bird on a branch; he threw a rock at it and hit it.  The woman saw a squirrel on the ground and said, "Aww, isn't that cute?"

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Building on the accepted answer, which “can be found online elsewhere pretty readily” (for example, here),

A eunuch who did not see well saw a bat perched on a reed and threw a pumice stone which hit the bat.  However, the bat was transsexual, so the “And hit him” clause is only half true.

[Not that there’s anything wrong with that.  $:)$ ]

Meanwhile, in a nearby sandlot, kids with good vision were hitting a pumice stone with a bat.  $\large :)$

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