Bobo's "Don't Look Back" Tour

Nov 08, 2004

This puzzler was submitted by Dennis Michaud, from an outfit called Mathworks. The best thing about it? I don't have to obfuscate—it's pre-obfuscated!

Here it is:

The company that Bobo works for just finished a new product. They wanted to promote it across the country. Bobo was asked to travel by car to each of the 48 contiguous U.S. states to promote the product. He was told that he could visit each state in whatever order he chose, but the company wanted him to start in Delaware, at their headquarters.

They asked that he visit each state only once. He could not go back into a state he had already visited—this was the "Don't Look Back" product tour. So, Bobo sat down at his desk and began to plan his trip.

He realized immediately that it was going to be one long car trip. At that moment, his boss stopped by and said, "Hey, I'm going to join you when you reach your last state. I was born there and I've been looking for a reason to go back and visit. You can leave your rental car there, and I'll fly you back in my private jet."

Since Bobo hadn't planned his trip yet, how did his boss know which state was going to be Bobo's last state? And, which state would that be?


RAY: He winds up in the one state that borders only one other state -- the great state of Maine, which only borders New Hampshire and, of course, Canada.

TOM: And the Atlantic Ocean.

RAY: Who's our winner, Tommy?

TOM: The winner is Pam Clayton from Munroe Township, New Jersey. And for having her answer selected at random from among all the correct answers that we got, Pam is going to get a 26 dollar gift certificate to the Shameless Commerce Division at And there she can order our new brand-new CD called Maternal Combustion, with calls about moms and cars, featuring among other stars, my mother.

RAY: Your mother is on the CD?

TOM: Yeah.

RAY: So's my mother. What are the chances of that?

Get the Car Talk Newsletter