Deserted Island

Mar 28, 2015

RAY: You are kidnapped and unceremoniously dumped on a deserted island in the Pacific. This island basically is 10 miles long and about a hundred yards wide, and it's completely covered with grass and palm trees. And your captors have been nice enough to give you a few things to assist you in surviving. They've given you a supply of water, a life-size poster of Ginger Grant, a flashlight, a box of matches and a blankie.
So, the first day, you walk around the island, and you notice that you've got no chance of escape because the island is sheer drop-off all around, 500 feet onto sharp rocks into shark-infested waters. So, there is no escape from this island, and you go to sleep that first night under your blankie, and you're awakened the next morning by the sound of thunder and the bright flash of lightning.

TOM: Oh-oh. I'm not going to like this.

RAY: I don't think so. And you realize that lightning has struck the far end of the island. You're approximately in the middle, let's say, so five miles away from you, lightning has struck and has set the grass and palm trees on fire. And as luck would have it, there's a breeze blowing from the fire toward you. So, it's pushing the flame in your direction. And you can imagine that everything on the island is going to be toasted—including you, unless you think quick. And the question is: How do you save your sorry butt until your wife can pay off the ransom?

TOM: Fat chance.
 
Answer: 
RAY: However, you save yourself with the matches. You turn around with your back to the fire and you light the grass in front of you on fire . The same wind that's blowing that fire toward you, is going to blow the new fire toward the end of the island and leave behind a place where there's nothing combustible. Every firefighter knows that this is a classic firebreak.

TOM: Oh! Man! This is great!

RAY: And you'll escape, but you'll only last two more days because there'll be nothing to eat on the island, and you'll be dead, but you'll have gotten two more days!

TOM: And you would've won the Puzzler!

RAY: That too! Do we have a winner, Tommy?

TOM: Congratulations to Margaret Reynolds from Ocean Springs, Mississippi.

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