A Fistful of Brain Teasers

Don Atkinson posted:

Here's another to fascinate or irritate.........

Before my birth I had a name,

But soon as born I chang'd the same;

And when i'm laid within the tomb,

I shall my father's name assume.

I change my name three days together,

Yet live but one, in any weather.

That’s one I’ve heard before and remember (or at least I think I do, though I don’t recall how weather fits) - so I’ll keep out of it for now

Innocent Bystander posted:
Don Atkinson posted:

I

Eoink posted:

Is it a splinter in a toe? So the wood is a piece of wood which you catch with a bare foot, get a splinter in a toe, sit down to try to remove it, then come home still with the splinter under your skin.

I think that will do nicely.................although the official object is a "thorn"

It just goes to show how irritating these Riddles can be !

My challenge, if challenges were allowed, is that you don’ catch a thorn (or splinter), rather it catches you...

I can see it for splinter, because in that case the meaning is that  I "caught the wood with my toe", an idiomatic way of saying I kicked it by mistake.

Innocent Bystander posted:
Don Atkinson posted:

I

Eoink posted:

Is it a splinter in a toe? So the wood is a piece of wood which you catch with a bare foot, get a splinter in a toe, sit down to try to remove it, then come home still with the splinter under your skin.

I think that will do nicely.................although the official object is a "thorn"

It just goes to show how irritating these Riddles can be !

My challenge, if challenges were allowed, is that you don’ catch a thorn (or splinter), rather it catches you...

Of course challenges are allowed, we live in a democracy

However, as I stated at the start of these riddles, there is only one correct answer - mine !

(actually, the riddles that I have here, are 200 to 2,000 years old and the answers have stood the test of that time accordingly.) But you're fee to challenge them nontheless...............

" I scratched myself on a thorn"; "I got a thorn stuck in my finger", "I (accidentally) ripped my jacket on a thorn"

v

"A thorn stuck itself into my leg"; "a thorn tore my jacket to threads in a moment of extreme anger"

The thorn is passive in all this. I (me) am the active participant along with my apparel........

 

Innocent Bystander posted:
Don Atkinson posted:

Here's another to fascinate or irritate.........

Before my birth I had a name,

But soon as born I chang'd the same;

And when i'm laid within the tomb,

I shall my father's name assume.

I change my name three days together,

Yet live but one, in any weather.

That’s one I’ve heard before and remember (or at least I think I do, though I don’t recall how weather fits) - so I’ll keep out of it for now

I think "in any weather" could be replaced with "whatever the weather"

I think those three words are only there to maintain the rhythm and to rhyme with "together"

Don Atkinson posted:
Innocent Bystander posted:
Don Atkinson posted:

Here's another to fascinate or irritate.........

Before my birth I had a name,

But soon as born I chang'd the same;

And when i'm laid within the tomb,

I shall my father's name assume.

I change my name three days together,

Yet live but one, in any weather.

That’s one I’ve heard before and remember (or at least I think I do, though I don’t recall how weather fits) - so I’ll keep out of it for now

I think "in any weather" could be replaced with "whatever the weather"

I think those three words are only there to maintain the rhythm and to rhyme with "together"

It feels like it should be something like a mayfly. So something that lives as a nymph stage, then moults to a subimago, then to the full mayfly with a lifespan of a day in that phase. (I'm pretty sure mayflies live more than a day, but the original belief was one day.)  So it goes through three lifecycle stages over 3 days changing name each time, but the father's name in the tomb doesn't fit.

Eoink posted:
Don Atkinson posted:
Innocent Bystander posted:
Don Atkinson posted:

Here's another to fascinate or irritate.........

Before my birth I had a name,

But soon as born I chang'd the same;

And when i'm laid within the tomb,

I shall my father's name assume.

I change my name three days together,

Yet live but one, in any weather.

That’s one I’ve heard before and remember (or at least I think I do, though I don’t recall how weather fits) - so I’ll keep out of it for now

I think "in any weather" could be replaced with "whatever the weather"

I think those three words are only there to maintain the rhythm and to rhyme with "together"

It feels like it should be something like a mayfly. So something that lives as a nymph stage, then moults to a subimago, then to the full mayfly with a lifespan of a day in that phase. (I'm pretty sure mayflies live more than a day, but the original belief was one day.)  So it goes through three lifecycle stages over 3 days changing name each time, but the father's name in the tomb doesn't fit.

If you don't sort this one out today, I'll give you another hint tomorrow..........

Cheers

Don

Ah, so it's days. Today I think is the answer. Before midnight of the previous day "today" is "tomorrow" (that's really hard to make comprehensible, I'll stick with this wording), at my birth I become today and my father (the day before me) becomes yesterday, at my end I become yesterday and thus assume my father's name.

I completely missed the helpful hint yesterday.

JRHardee posted:

Past, present, future?

More or less JR. Only.................

"past" = infinite number of days

"Present" = today (at best, more likely "this specific moment" (nano second perhaps ?)

"future" = well, that depends more on Trump and Putin at "the moment" (in this case "the moment" is different from "this specific moment" above)

All rather confusing to me

 

Time for another riddle......................

What, of all things in the world is

The longest

The shortest

The swiftest

The slowest

The most divisible and

The most extended

Most regretted

Most neglected

Without which nothing can be done and

With which many do nothing

Which destroys all that is little and

Ennobles all that is great ?

Ian G. posted:

'Time" itself fits many of those.....

You may be right, because it can be fitted to all - I have been puzzling over the qualification “of all the things in the world”, which I can’t help feeling is a clue, looking for an anagram from some of the letters in “the world” that might fit.

Hello - I'm looking for a joke that was posted the other day - goes something like at a funeral, somebody went up to the widow and asked if he could say a word.  She said "certainly," and he whispered "plethora."  She said "thank you, that means a lot."  Is that sort of how it goes?  I'd like to pass it along but don't want to look like an idiot.

docmark posted:

Hello - I'm looking for a joke that was posted the other day - goes something like at a funeral, somebody went up to the widow and asked if he could say a word.  She said "certainly," and he whispered "plethora."  She said "thank you, that means a lot."  Is that sort of how it goes?  I'd like to pass it along but don't want to look like an idiot.

On "Best Jokes" thread, current page .  Posted by Rod Smith 14 April.

Innocent Bystander posted:
Ian G. posted:

'Time" itself fits many of those.....

You may be right, because it can be fitted to all - I have been puzzling over the qualification “of all the things in the world”, which I can’t help feeling is a clue, looking for an anagram from some of the letters in “the world” that might fit.

These are “riddles” IB.

They can be irritating or fascinating , depending on your mood or point of view.

they incorporate analogies, approximations and exaggerations.

personally, I don’t like them. They are too imprecise.

but they do make me think, and think “out of the box” and this thinking extends well beyond the initial riddle.

cheers, Don

Don Atkinson posted:
Ian G. posted:

'Time" itself fits many of those.....

Time !

Spot on Ian.

These riddles aren't precise in the way of mathematical brain teasers. They are open to doubt and discussion.

But "time" is the (officially) correct answer

Got to love a lucky guess !

sjbabbey posted:
Don Atkinson posted:
sjbabbey posted:

A hephalump.

............as in Winnie the Pooh ?

Indeed but slightly fiercer and not pink (you couldn't move for bumping into one in 7th Century England).

well, it just shows, these riddles can have more than one justifiable outcome, but........

..........there is only one right answer, and it's goes by a bit more common name than a heffalump

………………… in the I-Pad factory not a creature was stirring except for... In an attempt to discover the secrets of Apple’s new i-Pad Streaming App, a team of Naim engineers decided to gain illegal entry to the i-Pad factory. Oh the shame of it!

They arrive at the factory in the dead of night and decide to try to gain entry via the roof. Naturally they aren't carrying a ladder because this would arouse suspicion among the locals. So they search for one and eventually find an old wooden ladder with a slightly rotten set of rungs. The ladder has length L. The factory roof is hard to access, even with a ladder, and on their first attempt the ladder crackles and threatens to break. They stop climbing and wonder what to do. Scouting for a way in they find a wall against which a large, cubic crate has been left, of side 1m. They reason that if they position the ladder so that it touches the ground, the wall and the outer, top edge of the crate, that this will provide sufficient support to prevent the ladder from breaking. Good.

Being exacting engineers and slaves to planning they first decide to calculate the exact distance that they must place the foot of the ladder away from the bottom edge of the crate so that it will just touch both the wall and the edge of the crate. Can they work it out before sunrise?

In terms of the ladder length L, what is the horizontal distance the foot of the ladder must be placed away from the bottom edge of the crate? Assume the ground is horizontal, the wall vertical and the crate a perfect cube.

The winner will have the most elegant formula, but you might find it more profitable to share ideas.....!

Don Atkinson posted:

Another one, this time from the 7th century..........

Long since, the holy power that made all things

So made me that my master’s dangerous foes

I scatter. Bearing weapons in my jaws,

I soon decide fierce combats; yet flee

Before the lashings of a little child

It’s beaten me, though probably blindingly obviious - weapons in jaws, suggests an animal with fearsome fangs, but fleeing from a child..? So I think not a living thing, but an abstract concept from religeous, possibly Christian teaching, but not satan.

TOBYJUG posted:

..Almost everyone is familiar with Meatloafs ' I'd do anything for love ( but I won't do that). famous hit from Bat out of Hell.

Does any one know what THAT was, THAT which wouldn't be done ?

The last time I talked to Meatloaf**, he wasn't giving any response to this question, so I assumed then, and have done to this day, just as Innocent Bystander has, that it would be the listener who would determine their own limit beyond which they would not go "for love".

For me, I have not yet discovered a limit, although I have to admit thoughts of my mother in law seem to conjour an image of what "That" might be.

** I'm blatently and unashamedly name dropping here as you have already summised, but it's true... I met Meatloaf back in 1984 at a Heathrow hotel - he'd just dropped his motorcycle trying to park it and wasn't feeling very communicative.  

rjstaines posted:
TOBYJUG posted:

..Almost everyone is familiar with Meatloafs ' I'd do anything for love ( but I won't do that). famous hit from Bat out of Hell.

Does any one know what THAT was, THAT which wouldn't be done ?

The last time I talked to Meatloaf**, he wasn't giving any response to this question

** I'm blatently and unashamedly name dropping here as you have already summised, but it's true... I met Meatloaf back in 1984 at a Heathrow hotel - he'd just dropped his motorcycle trying to park it and wasn't feeling very communicative.  

In other words, he didn't explain in 1984 what the lyrics to a song he wouldn't perform until 1993 meant?  Strange that. :-)

He has explained (since) ... including using blackboard to illustrate on VH-1 (TV).

Innocent Bystander posted:

Not a song I particularly like, but isn’t the whole point that it is up to the listener to imagine?

No; its up to the listener to listen to the lyrics of the song ... each verse has two things he (Meatloaf) would do for love, and one thing he wouldn't...

In other words in the first verse:

And I would do anything for love
I'd run right into hell and back
I would do anything for love
I'd never lie to you and that's a fact
But I'll never forget the way you feel right now
Oh no, no way
And I would do anything for love
Oh I would do anything for love
I would do anything for love, but I won't do that
No, I won't do that

He would "run right into hell and back" and would "never lie to you" but he wouldn't "forget the way you feel right now".

Jim Steinmann thought it would confuse the listeners apparently, but Meatloaf felt it was clear.  I guess Mr Meatloaf was wrong!

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