Case of Two Bedouins and a Broken Car

Apr 08, 2000

RAY: A Bedouin is driving his car home from work late one night. And the car breaks down.

TOM: In the desert?

RAY: No, no, no. He lives in Paterson, New Jersey. I like this puzzler, because it requires that you think outside the box, as they say.

He calls his brother and says, "I need help. You've got to come rescue me, my car broke down." So, the Bedouin's brother shows up, many hours later, with his car. They assess the situation. The first brother, whose car had broken down, says, "Are you ready to help?" To which the second brother replies, "I can't tow you. We do have a rope, you know -- but I still can't tow you home." After hearing this, the brother who broke down thinks for a minute, then says, "That's okay. I'll tow you home."

TOM: How could this possibly be?


RAY: And he's going to do the towing? How could this possibly be?

TOM: Wow!

RAY: Well, the way it could possibly be, the only scenario I can envision, is that Fred's brakes had failed.

TOM: Yeah.

RAY: So, if, if in fact Frank had tried to tow him home, he'd be crashing into him every time he stopped.

TOM: Sonja Henie's tutu!

RAY: On the other hand, if Fred is driving...

TOM: In the front.

RAY: ...the broken car in the front...

TOM: And Frank steps on the brake...

RAY: ...And he steps on the brake, the brother will see the brake lights and know enough to step on the brake himself and slow both cars down.

TOM: Because the rope will pull. Ah.

RAY: Until the rope breaks. That's next week.

TOM: Man, that's very good!

RAY: Do we have a winner this week?

TOM: No.

RAY: Nobody won?

TOM: Yeah. We got a winner.

RAY: They were so disgruntled over last week's.

TOM: See now, that's a good Puzzler. That's good.

RAY: I realize there is not an abundance of good Puzzlers out there. So, you can't go shooting your wad the first 10 years of the show.

TOM: No.

RAY: You gotta go for the long...

TOM: Dole them out.

RAY: And you gotta intersperse a couple of stinkers in there.

TOM: Sure.

RAY: And more than that, it makes people really appreciate the few good ones that come along every once in awhile.

TOM: Sure. I mean, don't forget, even the best of hitters bats only like 300.

RAY: That's right.

TOM: In baseball.

RAY: And everyone thinks he's a hero and a star, and he makes $4.9 million a year. Don't forget that part.

TOM: And don't forget that part.

RAY: Yeah.

TOM: So, if you hit one out of three, that's pretty good. Of course, you're about one out of 10. But the winner is Victoria Loudis from Douglaston, New York.

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