Riddle #878


Rainy Day Elevators

A man lives on the 44th floor of his building. On rainy days, when he gets home from work, he takes the elevator all the way up to his floor. But on sunny days, he goes up to floor 20 and walks the rest of the way. Why does he do this?
The man is a midget and cannot reach button "44" in the elevator on sunny days. On rainy days he has his umbrella with him and is able to use it to press the button.
93.05 %
36 votes

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German/Swiss border

A woman who lived in Germany during World War II wanted to cross the German/Swiss border in order to escape Nazi pursuers. The bridge which she is to cross is a half mile across, over a large canyon. Every three minutes a guard comes out of his bunker and checks if anyone is on the bridge. If a person is caught trying to escape German side to the Swiss side they are shot. If caught crossing the other direction without papers they are sent back. She knows that it takes at least five minutes to cross the bridge, in which time the guard will see her crossing and shoot her. How does she get across?
She waits until the guard goes inside his hunt, and begins to walk across the bridge. She gets a little more than half way, turns around, and begins to walk toward the geman side once more. The guard comes out, sees that she has no papers, and sends her "back" to the swiss side.
91.71 %
51 votes


A man was driving a truck

A man was driving a truck at 60 mph. He did not have his headlights on and the moon was not up. Yet he did not hit the woman who crossed the road. How?
He was driving the truck during daytime.
92.67 %
34 votes


Stop fighting

Sally and her younger brother were fighting. Their mother was tired of the fighting, and decided to punish them by making them stand on the same piece of newspaper in such a way that they couldn't touch each other. How did she accomplish this?
Sally's mother slid a newspaper under a door and made Sally stand on one side of the door and her brother on the other.
93.22 %
37 votes


Eight eights

Using eight eights and addition only, can you make 1000?
888 + 88 + 8 + 8 + 8 = 1000
93.05 %
36 votes


New York Hair

You are visiting NYC when a man approaches you. "Not counting bald people, I bet a hundred bucks that there are two people living in New York City with the same number of hairs on their heads," he tells you. "I'll take that bet!" you say. You talk to the man for a minute, after which you realize you have lost the bet. What did the man say to prove his case?
This is a classic example of the pigeonhole principle. The argument goes as follows: assume that every non-bald person in New York City has a different number of hairs on their head. Since there are about 9 million people living in NYC, let's say 8 million of them aren't bald. So 8 million people need to have different numbers of hairs on their head. But on average, people only have about 100,000 hairs. So even if there was someone with 1 hair, someone with 2 hairs, someone with 3 hairs, and so on, all the way up to someone with 100,000 hairs, there are still 7,900,000 other people who all need different numbers of hairs on their heads, and furthermore, who all need MORE than 100,000 hairs on their head. You can see that additionally, at least one person would need to have at least 8,000,000 hairs on their head, because there's no way to have 8,000,000 people all have different numbers of hairs between 1 and 7,999,999. But someone having 8,000,000 is an essential impossibility (as is even having 1,000,000 hairs), So there's no way this situation could be the case, where everyone has a different number of hairs. Which means that at least two people have the same number of hairs.
94.11 %
43 votes


Horse race

Two men ride their horses to the town blacksmith to ask for his daughter's hand in marriage. To help decide who will get to marry her, the blacksmith proposes a very strange race: "You will race your horses down the mile-long road from here to to the center of town, and the man whose horse passes through city hall's gates LAST will get to marry my daughter." The men have no idea how to proceed, but after a few minutes of thinking, they come up with a great idea to abide by the blacksmith's rules. 30 minutes later, one of the men is gloating, having won the daughter's hand in marriage. What was the idea the men had?
Each man rides the other man's horse. They race as they normally would. The blacksmith said the man whose horse crosses last would win, so the man who wins the race would have his horse finish last.
93.39 %
38 votes


An exclusive club

A man wanted to enter an exclusive club but did not know the password that was required. He waited by the door and listened. A club member knocked on the door and the doorman said, "twelve." The member replied, "six " and was let in. A second member came to the door and the doorman said, "six." The member replied, "three" and was let in. The man thought he had heard enough and walked up to the door. The doorman said ,"ten" and the man replied, "five." But he was not let in. What was the right answer then?
Three. The doorman lets in those who answer with the number of letters in the word the doorman says.
93.70 %
40 votes


Teenage boy

In a small town in the United States, a teenage boy asked his parents if he could go to a friend's party. His parents agreed, provided that he was back before sunrise. He left the house that evening clean-shaven and when he returned just before the following sunrise his parents were amazed to see that he had a fully grown beard. What happened?
The small town was Barrow in Alaska, the northernmost town in the United States. When the sun sets there in the middle of November, it does not rise again for 65 days. That allowed plenty of time for the boy to grow a beard before the next sunrise.
94.36 %
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Measuring Gallons of Water

You have two jugs, one that holds exactly 3 gallons, and one that holds exactly 5 gallons. Using just these two jugs and a fire hose, how can you measure out exactly 4 gallons of water?
Fill the 5-gallon jug to the top, and then pour it into the 3-gallon jug until the 3-gallon jug is full. You now have 2 gallons remaining in the 5-gallon jug. Pour out the 3-gallon jug, and then pour the 2 gallons from the 5-gallon jug into the 3-gallon jug. Finally, fill the 5-gallon jug to the top and pour it into the 3-gallon jug until it's full. Since there was only space left for 1 more gallon in the 3-gallon jug, you now have exactly 4 gallons in the 5-gallon jug.
93.39 %
38 votes