Camping with Water
RAY: I stole this puzzler from a little book by Terry Stickles, and there's a foreword in here by Will Shortz, who, of course, is the puzzle editor of the New York Times and a frequent visitor to National Public Radio.
You've been invited to go on a camping trip in the woods with 30 of your closest buddies, and you've rented a cabin in the woods. You pile into your cars and drive to the cabin. The next morning, everyone gets up and decides that Cookie is going to make homemade pancakes for everyone, but he needs to add to the recipe exactly two gallons of water. So you are sent to the well to fetch two gallons of water with no measuring device. When you get to the well, you discover there are two jugs there. One says 13 gallons, and the other says seven gallons. And your job, if you choose to accept it, is to come back with exactly two gallons of water.
TOM: Can you make two trips to the well?
RAY: No, you can't! They're earthenware jugs! They're very heavy, and you've got a bad ticker, a bad back and a bad front. So you're allowed one trip.
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[ Car Talk Puzzler ]