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Clowning Around

Situation puzzles (sometimes called lateral thinking puzzles) are ones where you need to ask lots of yes or no questions to figure out what happened in the situation. These are good puzzles for groups where one person knows the puzzle and answers the questions.


Puzzle ID:#285
Fun:*** (2.85)
Difficulty:** (1.93)
Submitted By:Mr. GAus*****
Corrected By:horse_luver




A clown is out hiking in the woods. He comes to a large ravine with a rickety old bridge spanning the width. He needs to cross this bridge. There is a sign posted saying that the bridge's weight capacity is only 160 pounds. Fortunately, the clown only weighs 158 pounds, clothes and all. Unfortunately, he is carrying a 1 pound apple (his lunch), a 2 pound red nose (an old clown gag) and a 2 pound rubber ball (something to amuse himself as he travels.) Knowing that he cannot risk exceeding the weight limit of the bridge and that he cannot throw away any of his items, how does the clown cross the bridge in only one trip?


He simply juggles the three items as he crosses the bridge.

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Jun 26, 2001

The answer about juggling with the THREE items does not seem plausible. Because at any time he will have two of the items in his hands for a total weight of either 3 pounds or 4 pounds .. which would exceed 160 pounds. According to me, the clown should FIRST eat his apple and then juggle his way through the bridge with the other two items weighing 2 pounds each.
Sep 08, 2001

Juggling the objects is as clever as Wil E. Coyote stepping out of the falling phone booth just before it smashes to the ground. But it defies the laws of physics. The very act of juggling imposes an opposing force, however small, to tossing the ball upwards thus the clown "weighs" more in direct proportion to the weight of the objects he is tossing upwards. A fun solution but don't try it at home.
Sep 16, 2001

I agree with starman, even though it sounds nice, the feat is quite impossible, and is not actually a solution to the clown's problem.
Sep 16, 2001

and by the way vikass, when you juggle with 3 things, there is only 1 object in your hand at a given time, and for a split second, all three are in the air. I know, I can juggle quite well.
Feb 03, 2002

First of all you can't throw any item, as per the statement, and when juggling you would be throwing them in the air. Secondly you also can't eat the apple, because you would be just adding the weight of the apple to your stomach
Feb 20, 2002

The question is: How DOES the CLOWN cross the bridge in only one trip? He is a clown so having juggled the items was an appropriate choice for him. The fact that he made it across might be due to the fact that exceeding the weight limit did put stress on the bridge but did not actually break it. The clown may have proudly made it across never actually realizing that he was in danger.
Mar 25, 2002

Why doesn't he take off all of his clothes. That would leave enough weight for the extra materials, and he's a clown, so no one will care if he's in his underwear. And what kind of rubber nose weighs 2 pounds anyway? That's a BIG rubber nose! And a ONE POUND APPLE! Holy crap, give me that apple! An apple that weighs a friggin' pound! Anyway, stop sweatin' it, it was a good puzzle.
Mar 27, 2002

Very simple. His big nose and rubber ball are both round objects. You can't throw them, but who says he can't ROLL them across?
Jul 28, 2002

or he just throws his rubber ball and nose across the bridge then simply walks across it
Aug 20, 2002

I knew this one. Still, if there's one bad juggling teaser, I haven't heard it!
Apr 01, 2003

That was very creative and cute.
Jan 26, 2004

What if the clown throws the nose and ball to the other side of the bridge and walk across with the apple?
Jul 29, 2004

very boring...seen this one and similar ones at least 6 times since a few months ago.
Jul 29, 2004

very, very boring...seen this one and similar ones at least 6 times since a few months ago.
they are all over the place...
Jul 29, 2004

very, very boring...seen this one and similar ones at least 6 times since a few months ago.
they are all over the place...
Sep 01, 2004

duh! but cute
Nov 01, 2005

very creative
Nov 09, 2005

Thought he rolled the apple and ball across the bridge and then carry the bag, who knew...Good one though
Nov 11, 2005

I thought it was quite good, although some other commenters didn't. Keep up the good work
Dec 09, 2005

If he ate the apple the 1 pound apple would break the brige.
Dec 19, 2005

this was from MindTrap also, but only the concept. i'll forgive you though.
Jan 10, 2006

Starman is right... A 2 lb ball held in the hand is actually being "accelerated" by gravity downward so that it exerts a 2 lb force. If you hold it, you are exerting a 2 lb force to keep it from falling. If you toss it at all into the air, you are matching and then exceeding the acceleration of gravity, there will be a downward reaction force of a little over 2 lbs force. If you throw high enough to juggle, the force will be noticeably more than 2 lbs.

I know, I know, it's just a simple teaser.. Geesh, don't need to get so technical!
Feb 27, 2006

I say the clcown takes off all of the clothes and come back for them later
Mar 12, 2006

My answer is, the clown balances all 3 items on his head. It won't work, but neither will juggling, so in my opinion my solution is just as good.
Mar 25, 2006

Wouldn't the nose, apple, and ball be part of the clothes and ALL?
Apr 10, 2006

why would he have a two pound rubber nose !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

everything else is taken so literally and analyzed so thoroughly but no one has questioned the probability of the rubber nose being that heavy !

Apr 18, 2006

Oh yeah? Well how heavy is your nose?
May 04, 2006

That's a good one, impossible, but good
May 08, 2006

How about he just cycled across.The pounds are how much he payed for them.
May 19, 2006

HA HA HAlarious!!!!!!!!!!!!!
thats some pretty heavy stuff though
Aug 20, 2006

i was thinking he'd just throw the ball and eat the apple. that way he'd only have 160 lbs.
Aug 20, 2006

That's one pretty cool teaser!
Aug 28, 2006

he could just throw all 3 items over
Sep 09, 2006

I agree with Starman and I thought the answer would be to roll the round objects. I don't do well with a lot of situation teasers but I enjoy them anyway. So much was improbable with this, a bridge with such a tiny weight limit, a two pound nose, but that funny stuff gave it entertainment value.
Nov 11, 2006

I say the clown should just jump in the ravine. He doesn't deserve to live
Nov 20, 2006

Feb 15, 2007

I love this one!
May 05, 2007

Clowns scare me...
May 23, 2007

what kind of a nose weighs 2 pounds
Nov 15, 2008

Why is this clown in the woods anyway? And why does he have a two pound nose? And...
Nov 16, 2008

Vikass, it depends on how you juggle. In a cascade pattern, you're right, as some point there will be two objects in each hand. But if it's a shower pattern, there is only one object or less in your hands at any given time. But actually the force of catching the objects would send the clown tumbling down...
Nov 22, 2009

All that I'm going to say is look at teaser #44177.
Jun 02, 2010

Just roll the nose and the ball across. duhhhhhh...
Jul 23, 2011

well, you could just throw the nose across!
May 27, 2012

He could take off his clothes and throw THEM across.
Jul 16, 2013

That wouldn't work, even if at the most you have one thing in your hand. When the clown catches either the nose or the rubber ball, the pressure from it falling into his hand would exceed the limit of 160 lbs.

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