Bugsy's Car Conundrum

Feb 19, 2007

RAY: Last week before the show we were talking about Bugsy's car collection. For the twenty plus years that we've known him, Bugsy has regaled us with tales about his Corvette restoration, his '63 Lincoln Continental Limo and lots of other classic cars that we've never seen and his wife didn't know he owned, until today. So we're sitting there and Tommy makes the following statement, 'Bugsy owns 50 cars. Maybe even more.'

Dougie says, 'No way. I know for sure that he owns fewer than 50 cars.'

Louie Cronin says, 'I know he owns at least one car.'

So Tommy says, 'Bugsy owns 50 cars, maybe more.' Berman says, 'No, no, no, he owns fewer than 50 cars, I know that for sure.' And Cronin says, 'I know one thing, he owns at least one car.'

Only one of these statements is true. How many cars does Bugsy really own?

RAY: Only one statement is true. If statement number three is true, then statement number two would also be true.

Let's say that Bugsy owned six cars. Louie's statement would be correct, and Berman's statement that, "Bugsy owns fewer than 50 cars," would also be correct. However, it is possible for statement number two to be correct if Bugsy owns no cars.

TOM: Exactly.

RAY: So, Bugsy owns zero cars, which makes the other two statements obviously false. Does he own at least one car? No. Does he own 50 cars or more?

TOM: No.

RAY: No, because he owns no cars. Who is our winner this week?

TOM: The winner this week is Grace Williams from Honolulu, Hawaii. And for having her answer selected at random from among all the correct answers that we got, we're going to deliver to Grace a 26-dollar gift certificate to the Shameless Commerce Division. We're going to deliver it to her because she lives in Honolulu.

RAY: Well there's no reason for you to go, I mean I could just go...

TOM: No, no it's all right, it's all right, I've already made the arrangements. Oh, and with that gift certificate she can get a red, black and white three-quarter-sleeve Car Talk baseball shirt. Anabolic steroids sold separately, Grace.

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