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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Puzzle me this... » » The sword (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Steve Martin
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A Japanese gentleman wishes to carry a straight ceremonial Sword to a friend's house by bus. However, the law forbids carrying anything longer than 36 inches on a bus. The sword measures 42 inches! How can he accomplish this? He is an honorable person and cannot break the law. The sword cannot be distorted or dismantled in any way and the man cannot swallow it or conceal it on his person. In fact it must remain in his possession at all times.
Any man who reads too much and uses his own brain too little falls into lazy habits of thinking.
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0pus
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I believe a cubic box with inside dimensions of 24 1/4 inches on a side should do the trick.

0pus
nike
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ri
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The law forbids anything longer?

but does that include along a diagonal?

a 36 by 36 box should be able to hold something that's 42 inches from corner to corner

not sure if this is right approach...

but what do I know?
Larry Barnowsky
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Stick the sword out the window of the bus 6 inches.
Jonathan Townsend
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Larry... ouch... those narrow roads are getting more dangerous every day.. lol.

Longer is which way?? horizontal? How about taller? Or wider? Or strapped to his leg. I had a math prof who used to do Kendo exercises during lecture with a meterstick... funny guy.
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Steve Martin
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Yep - the answer is he sticks half the sword up his backside. It's painful, but at least he doesn't get arrested. Or maybe he does!
Any man who reads too much and uses his own brain too little falls into lazy habits of thinking.
Albert Einstein
Steve Martin
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OK, OK - not really. He sticks the sword diagonally in a case that is 36" long.

It's a strangely satisfying and simple solution.
Any man who reads too much and uses his own brain too little falls into lazy habits of thinking.
Albert Einstein
0pus
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You are only thinking in two dimensions.

See my answer above.

0pus
Larry Barnowsky
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Have the bus accelerate to near light speed. An observer on the ground will note that the sword is shorter than 42 inches thanks to space contacture, a feature of Special Relativity. Adjust the speed until the sword is 36 inches or less.
Jonathan Townsend
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Ya know, that is not a bad answer for the case where the police are on the ground watching the bus go by.

Must be some great public transport that travels at just over 0.75*c
...to all the coins I've dropped here
0pus
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Unfortunately, the Doppler effect will make red lights appear green and the bus will be stopped by the police.

0pus
Larry Barnowsky
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Opus,
You're right, but that's assuming the bus CAN stop before the nearest intergalactic bus stop. By the way, when the cop gets out of the patrol car, will it be Robert Patrick from Terminator 2 ?
davejesc
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No, but he'll be days younger than his identical twin brother.
-Dave
Steve Martin
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And all the passengers will be squashed flat against the rear window of the bus...oh, no wait - that's wrong.
Any man who reads too much and uses his own brain too little falls into lazy habits of thinking.
Albert Einstein
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