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Rotating Coins Around Coins

You have two coins of equal size on a table, situated end to end vertically. If you roll the top coin around the bottom coin until it returns to its original position, how many times will it have rotated?

Twice. See this video for more details.

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Invisible Walls

What invention lets you look right through a wall?

A window.

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Rearrange the letters of each word in the phrase below to form a well-known saying.


Better Late Than Never

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Area, Death, Kick

What word can be added before or after these words to make a new word or phrase?

Area, Death, Kick

Penalty. Penalty area, Death penalty, Penalty kick.

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The More You Run

The more you run, the harder I am to catch. What am I?

Your breath.

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Bank Wait Times

Suppose a small bank has one teller and customer transactions take 10 minutes on average. With 5.8 customers arriving per hour, what is the expected wait time? What would it be if you added a second teller?

With one teller, customers will wait nearly five hours on average. But adding a second teller makes the wait go down to 3 minutes.

Thanks to John D. Cook for this one.

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Dead At The End of An Alley

A man is found dead at the end of an alley. A detective who enters the scene sees the letter X and immediately knows who killed the man and why. What did the detective conclude?

The alley is a bowling alley. The man who was killed was a pin spotter (an old profession where they would reset the pins by hand). The X was the marking on the score sheet for a strike. The detective saw the letter X and knew that the person bowled last, got a strike, and was due to bowl again. But they bowled before the pin spotter could get out of the way.

Submitted by Dennis

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The Sheep’s Will

A farmer dies leaving a will dividing his flock of nineteen sheep with the following ratios:

Half to his oldest son, a quarter to the middle son and one fifth to his youngest son.

Without cutting any sheep up, how did the executor of the will fulfill the farmer’s wishes?

The executor went to the neighbouring farm and asked to borrow a sheep for a few minutes. Then he returned to the sons and said, “Half of the (now) twenty sheep is 10. A quarter of the twenty sheep is 5. A fifth of the twenty sheep is 4. 10 + 5 + 4 = 19. Then the executor took the borrowed 20th sheep back to the neighbour.

Thanks to Annette for sending this in.

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Dead and Bound

Dead and bound,
what once was free.
What made no sound,
Now sings with glee.

What is it?

Any wooden, stringed instrument (guitar, violin, cello, ukulele, etc)

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Ages Of Myself and My Brother

My current age, is the age of my 14 year-old brother plus one third of my age. How old will I be when my brother is twice his current age?

I will be 35. I am currently 21.

x = my current age

x = 14 + x/3
3x = 42 + x
2x = 42
x = 21 (so 14 years later, I'll be 35)
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