Best of Deals Car Reviews Repair Shops Cars A-Z Radio Show

"Pushing the MG" puzzler - Answer is WRONG!

The April 14, 2012 puzzler, “Pushing the MG” states:
“He takes a puff of his cigar, rests it on the bumper and begins to push. After three feet of pushing he stops to rest, and takes another puff of his cigar. While he’s doing that, the car rolls back two feet.”
“After his next restorative puff, he pushes three more feet up the hill, stops for another puff and a rest, and again the car rolls back two feet. He continues this all the way up.”
This states that there are TWO puffs per push. One before, and one after.

We all agree that the push #48 was the last push, as it got the car to the 50 foot point, and it could roll start.
However, the answer said: “it took 48 puffs.”
This is clearly wrong.
For 47 pushes, he took two puffs, totaling 94 puffs. Then on the 48th push, he only took the first puff, for a grand total of 95 puffs!

It may be wrong, but for a different reason. Do you recall the train puzzler where one engine could pull 40 cars through a valley, or 80 cars, but not 60 cars? Apply the same principle and you will see that on push 47, the rear wheels were within a foot of the summit, but the front wheels would be several feet over the summit and would easily drag the rear wheels the rest of the way.

Possibly push 46 would have done the trick. depending on the wheelbase of the TD.

BTW, while this is a little off topic (OK way off) that little island that NAS Sigonella is on is called Sicily. I’taint that little.

Each time it was puff first, then push, so the answer was correct. After pushing he would smoke, allowing the car to roll back.