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Answers to Summer Puzzles


Surviving the Toss: Either the two tosses come up the same (two heads or two tails) or different (one head, one tail). So one of them, say Alice, always says that Bob's toss will be the same as hers, e.g. she sees heads and guesses that Bob will get heads. Bob does the opposite, e.g. if he sees heads, he guesses Alice had tails. That way, one (and only one) of them will always be correct. (Doesn't that seem like magic? For the strategy to work, both Alice and Bob need to see the outcome of their own coin toss, even though it's totally uncorrelated to the outcome of the other's toss!)

Family: 8. Mother, father, five sons and one daughter.

Geometry Quickie: 0.44 approximately. AD = AC = 1 (since they're both tangent to the circle); AB = √2 (Pythagoras); draw radius OD to meet AB tangentially, so ODB is a right angle; triangle ODB is 90-45-45, so DB = DO; therefore radius = BD = √2 – 1 = approximately 0.44.

Consonants: Strengths. Anyone come up with another one?

Punch: The poison was in the ice cubes, which hadn't melted before she left. (Or: As suggested by the lawyer who proofed this before I submitted it, she put poison in the punch!)

Finally ... A towel.

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