Brain Exercises – May 24


Scrambled in each of the eight words is a shorter word which is a sports activity.  As a special challenge, number 8 has three possible answers.









Math puzzles

  1. An airplane flies in a straight line from airport A to Airport B then back in a straight line from B to A.  it travels with a constant engine speed and there is no wind.  Will its travel time for the same round trip be greater, less or the same if, throughout both flights, at the same engine speed, a constant wind blows from A to B?
  2. After you have dealt about half the cards for a bridge game, the telephone rings.  You put down the undealt cards to answer the phone.  After you return, neither you nor anyone else can remember where the last card was dealt.  No one has touched any of the dealt cards.   Without counting the cards in any hand, or the number of cards yet to be dealt, how can you finish the deal  rapidly and accurately, giving each player exactly the same cards he would have received if you hadn’t been interrupted?
  3. Can you place ten lumps of sugar in three empty cups so that there is an odd number of lumps in each cup?
  4. At the local hardware store, Jones learned that 1 would cost him 50 cents, 12 would cost him $1.00 and the price of 144 was $1.50.  What was Jones buying?
  5. After a series of experiments, a chemist discovered that it took 80 minutes for a certain chemical reaction to take place whenever he was wearing a green necktie, and the same reaction always took an hour and twenty minutes when he wore a purple tie.  Can you think of why this might be so?
  6. What two whole numbers (not fractions) make the unlucky number 13 when multiplied together?
  7. If a clock takes 5 seconds to strike 6 o’clock, how long will it take to strike 12 o’clock?
  8. A lady bug crawls along a ruler form the 12-inch mark at one end to the 6-inch m ark in the center.  It takes her 12 seconds.  Continuing on her way, she crawls from the 6-inch mark to the 1-inch mark but this takes her only 10 seconds.  Can you think of a good reason for the time difference?



  1. Polo
  2. Diving
  3. Soccer
  4. Bowling
  5. Golf or golfing
  6. Racing
  7. Boating
  8. Skiing, fishing, hiking

Math Puzzles

  1. Since the wind boost the plane’s speed from A to B, and retards it from B to A, one is tempted to suppose that these forces balance each other so that total travel time for the combined flights remains the same.  This is not the case, because the time during which the plane’s speed is boosted is shorter than the time during which it is retarded, so the overall effect is one of retardation.  The total travel time in a wind of constant speed and direction, regardless of the speed or direction, is always greater that if there were no wind. 

2. Continue the deal by taking cards from the bottom of the packet of undealt cards, dealing first to yourself then counter-clockwise around the table.

3. There are 15 different solutions to this problem, but all involve the same gimmick.  For example, put seven lumps in one cup, two in another, one in a third.  Now place the last cup in the second one.  The second cup will contain three lumps. 

4. Jones was buying house numbers.

5. There is nothing to explain because 80 minutes is the same as one hour and twenty minutes (sorry!)

6. 13 X 1 = 13

7.  The clock will take 11 seconds to strike 12 o’clock. There is one second between each stroke.

8. The lady bug moves at a constant speed of one inch every two seconds.  Did it occur to you that the distance from the center of the ruler to the one-inch mark is only five inches?