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Puzzling Prattle (by Sam Loyd)


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17 replies to this topic

#1 rookie1ja

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Posted 30 March 2007 - 03:23 PM

Puzzling Prattle (by Sam Loyd) - Back to the Logic Puzzles
Two children, who were all tangled up in their reckoning of the days of the week, paused on their way to school to straighten matters out. "When the day after tomorrow is yesterday," said Priscilla, then 'today' will be as far from Sunday as that day was which was 'today' when the day before yesterday was tomorrow!"
On which day of the week did this puzzling prattle occur?

This old topic is locked since it was answered many times. You can check solution in the Spoiler below.
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#2 the Simpleton

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Posted 21 April 2007 - 01:45 AM

They were only going to Sunday school!
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#3 larryhl

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Posted 05 June 2007 - 07:31 PM

hehe, yeah, when i figured out the current day was sunday, sunday school popped into my mind first.
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#4 Mokirain

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Posted 19 June 2007 - 06:56 AM

Couldn't it be Monday, instead?

They say it's as far from Sunday as the current day. Couldn't that be a Sunday in the future? Instead of one in the past, since they don't say whether "as far from" was past-or-future specific.

Hope that makes sense x.x
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#5 xposer

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Posted 14 July 2007 - 12:27 AM

It sounds like it could also be Friday. Because Tuesday (Day after tomorrow is yesterday) which is the so called "today" is just as far from sunday as Friday is.
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#6 xandarr

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Posted 25 July 2007 - 01:41 PM

Puzzling Prattle (by Sam Loyd) - Back to the Logic Puzzles
Two children, who were all tangled up in their reckoning of the days of the week, paused on their way to school to straighten matters out. "When the day after tomorrow is yesterday," said Priscilla, then 'today' will be as far from Sunday as that day was which was 'today' when the day before yesterday was tomorrow!"
On which day of the week did this puzzling prattle occur?



This one is fun to break down:

1. "When the day after tomorrow is yesterday, then today" = 3 days from today.
2. "Will be as far from Sunday as" = (no translation needed)
3. "That day which was today when the day before yesterday was tomorrow" = 3 days ago.

In other words: 3 days from today will be as far from Sunday as 3 days ago.

This can only be true if Sunday is today.

It's a shame they on their way to school on a day off. Poor kids.
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#7 PenguinBrain

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Posted 29 September 2007 - 08:35 AM

Yes, what about the Tuesday/Friday hypothesis?

Two children, who were all tangled up in their reckoning of the days of the week, paused on their way to school to straighten matters out. "When the day after tomorrow is yesterday," said Priscilla, then 'today' will be as far from Sunday as that day was which was 'today' when the day before yesterday was tomorrow!"
On which day of the week did this puzzling prattle occur?



When the day after tomorrow is yesterday= Tuesday +Tomorrow + Day After Tomorrow (Thursday)
Thursday = Yesterday = Friday

Friday is two days before Sunday and Tuesday is two days after Sunday. Same amount of time either way. How is this invalid?
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#8 Taidaishar

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Posted 31 October 2007 - 07:47 PM

Sorry for dredging up an old riddle. Saw it on IGoogle and thought the solution given wasn't the correct one.

Two children, who were all tangled up in their reckoning of the days of the week, paused on their way to school to straighten matters out. "When the day after tomorrow is yesterday," said Priscilla, then 'today' will be as far from Sunday as that day was which was 'today' when the day before yesterday was tomorrow!"
On which day of the week did this puzzling prattle occur?



This would only work if the prattle occurred on Tuesday.

With Tuesday
The day after tomorrow would be Thursday and THAT would be considered yesterday making the current day (TODAY) Friday.

With Friday
The day before Yesterday would be Wednesday and THAT would be considered tomorrow making the Current day (TODAY) Tuesday.

Friday and Tuesday are BOTH two days from sunday making this the correct answer.

I don't think the riddle works properly with Sunday being the day of the prattle:

(We'll call the day of the prattle X so that I can have a referral point.)

Two children, who were all tangled up in their reckoning of the days of the week, paused on their way to school to straighten matters out. "When the day after tomorrow is yesterday," said Priscilla, then 'today'


'today' in this phrase is NOT referring to Sunday, but to day X + 3. She is transporting herself to that day by saying WHEN the day after tomorrow is yesterday. I think we agree on that. What we don't agree on is that it seems you guys are jumping her BACK to sunday for the next part of her equation when it's not like that.

will be as far from Sunday as that day was which was 'today' when the day before yesterday was tomorrow!"
On which day of the week did this puzzling prattle occur?



She is obviously referring to day (X+3) - 3 at this point because she is making these statements WHILE still considering herself to be in day X + 3.

With Sunday
the day after tomorrow would be Tuesday and THAT would be considered yesterday making the current day (TODAY) Wednesday.

With Wednesday
the day before yesterday would be Monday and THAT would be considered tomorrow making the current day (TODAY) Sunday.

Wednesday is 3 days from Sunday, but Sunday is not.

For a little more clarification, the only way your scenario would work, is if the two days she alludes to are Wednesday and Thursday, but she clearly says

"When the day after tomorrow is yesterday," said Priscilla, then 'today' will be as far from Sunday as that day was which was 'today' when the day before yesterday was tomorrow!"


It seems you're giving the "today" in quotes TWO meanings. It can't be Sunday AND Wednesday. It can only be one. If it's Sunday, then you're saying Sunday will be as far from Sunday as Thursday is. That's not right. If it's Wednesday, then you're saying it will be as far from Sunday as Sunday is. That's not right either.

I hope I explained this fairly well. It's very complicated and I don't know exactly how to explain it but I think I did a passable job here.
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#9 rookie1ja

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Posted 31 October 2007 - 09:07 PM

Sorry for dredging up an old riddle. Saw it on IGoogle and thought the solution given wasn't the correct one.


Two children, who were all tangled up in their reckoning of the days of the week, paused on their way to school to straighten matters out. "When the day after tomorrow is yesterday," said Priscilla, then 'today' will be as far from Sunday as that day was which was 'today' when the day before yesterday was tomorrow!"
On which day of the week did this puzzling prattle occur?



This would only work if the prattle occurred on Tuesday.

With Tuesday
The day after tomorrow would be Thursday and THAT would be considered yesterday making the current day (TODAY) Friday.


just briefly proving that the prattle did not occur on Tuesday ...
The day after tomorrow would be Thursday and THAT would be considered yesterday making the current day (TODAY) Friday.
However, there is another part

then 'today' will be as far from Sunday as that day was which was 'today' when the day before yesterday was tomorrow!"


meaning: then Friday will be as far from Sunday as that day which was 'today' when Sunday (Tuesday minus 2 days) was tomorrow ... but Friday is not as far from Sunday as Saturday

I see now ... 2 meanings of 'today' ... I doesn't make much sense to me if 'today' has just 1 meaning - that would mean "... which was Friday when Saturday"
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#10 Taidaishar

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Posted 31 October 2007 - 09:31 PM


Sorry for dredging up an old riddle. Saw it on IGoogle and thought the solution given wasn't the correct one.


Two children, who were all tangled up in their reckoning of the days of the week, paused on their way to school to straighten matters out. "When the day after tomorrow is yesterday," said Priscilla, then 'today' will be as far from Sunday as that day was which was 'today' when the day before yesterday was tomorrow!"
On which day of the week did this puzzling prattle occur?



This would only work if the prattle occurred on Tuesday.

With Tuesday
The day after tomorrow would be Thursday and THAT would be considered yesterday making the current day (TODAY) Friday.


just briefly proving that the prattle did not occur on Tuesday ...
The day after tomorrow would be Thursday and THAT would be considered yesterday making the current day (TODAY) Friday.
However, there is another part

then 'today' will be as far from Sunday as that day was which was 'today' when the day before yesterday was tomorrow!"


meaning: then Friday will be as far from Sunday as that day which was Friday when Sunday (Tuesday minus 2 days) was tomorrow ... but Friday is not as far from Sunday as Saturday



I don't think you're reading it correctly. The bolded part should say this:
then Friday will be as far from Sunday as that day which would have been called "today" when (that's the key) the day before yesterday (2 days before Friday = Wednesday) was Tomorrow (which makes the day that would've been called today Tuesday).

The day that is called today is only called today WHEN the day before yesterday was tomorrow.

IMO, there can't be 2 meanings for 'today'. For yours, if today = Sunday then Sunday isn't as far away from Sunday as "that day was which was 'today' when the day before yesterday was tomorrow" (Thursday).

If then, today = Wednesday, then you have to figure out what day "was 'today' when the day before yesterday was tomorrow" relative to Wednesday because you've already conceded that TODAY is Wednesday making "the day before, yesterday" Monday and since THAT day is considered tomorrow, it would make the second Day in question Sunday. Thus, Wednesday and Sunday are not equidistant from Sunday.

Of course, I don't want to keep "prattling" on about this. If we still disagree then I'll leave it be. (I'm a poet and didn't know it).
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