Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0

The Man in the Elevator

164 posts in this topic

Posted · Report post

I agree that the "canonical" answer, involving a midget, is satisfying. Why? People often seem tickled by the idea of midgets, those strange little people whom we don't often acknowledge and then ridicule when we do. The brain-teaser is supposed to throw us off by asking about a man. When the man turns out to be a midget, we are delighted and surprised. Imagine that -- a midget can be a man! But shorter, of course. Right? Beware your satisfactions; they may belie your own insecurities.

Anyway, on to the point I thought I was going to make before getting sidetracked. There are so many problems with the midget answer -- well documented by others here, and most of them concerning the improbability of a midget who can hold down a job and afford an apartment but cannot figure out a better way to punch elevator buttons that are slightly out of his reach -- that except for his midgethood, there's little satisfaction to be found.

I found more satisfaction in the answers that focus on the man's desire for secrecy. When someone else is in the elevator, the man changes his routine, suggesting he wants to keep his after-work habits a secret from others in the building. An torrid affair, or just a sneak peek through a window -- such explanations seem more plausible than a poor little guy staring up at an unreachable button in the elevator. Such answers, however, tack on explanations about the umbrella as an afterthought, detracting from the satisfaction they otherwise offer.

My favorite answer, because it just occurred to me, focuses on the phrase "someone else in the elevator." That could mean anybody else, which is what most people assume, or it could mean someone in particular. Stick with me here: When you get into an elevator on the ground floor, there is seldom someone already in it, waiting to go up. He or she joins you as you enter. This creates a problem for the hypothetical secretive paramour, who could simply find an excuse to wait in the lobby, then proceed up to his lover on the seventh floor when the elevator is empty again. But what if the "someone else" whom the man encounters is riding the elevator down and exits as the man enters? And what if that "someone else" is not just anyone? I believe he must be the man's occasional tennis partner from the apartment building down the street, just now returning from a rousing game with someone else on the outside court on the seventh-floor terrace. Knowing that his partner is unavailable for a game, having already played, the man goes straight to his own tenth-floor apartment. If it has been raining that day, the tennis courts are wet and therefore unsuitable for tennis, so again the man proceeds straight to his apartment, where he amuses himself by marking off his height on a doorway and smugly noting that he may not be able to play tennis that day, but at least he is no midget.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

the man just used his umbrella to push the button to the seventh floor.... DUH

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

In my experience the floor buttons on the elevator are placed in the order of

lowest floor top then moving to higher floors. My asumption is that if the midget

is able to reach the 7 floor button he will suerly be able to reach the 10 floor button.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

Midget cannot reach button of 10th floor (only 7th floor one) unless he has umbrella or someone is there to push it for him

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

The man is a midget. He can only reach the seventh floor button. If it was raining, he would use his umbrella and if there was someone else in the elevator, he would ask them to push the button.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

I remember this one from middle school! The guys a midget, so he can't reach the top buttons on the elevator side. But in the morning he can reach the one, and in the afternoon, he can't reach the 10, only the seven, and walks the rest, unless someone else is in the elevator, then they can push the 10 button for him! HA! Genious!

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

Maybe the guy just wanted some exercise and maybe when it was raining he did not feel like carrying an umbrella up the stails plus boots can make u tired of walking.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

Although I have always wondered why they have braille drive-thru tellers. haha Just a joke.

I reasoned out that answer on my own! Button manufacturers don't have time determining where every button they make will end up. If they make all their buttons with braille then it solves the issue. They wouldn't need a special "braille line" they wouldn't have excess product, they wouldn't need to make sure only braille buttons make it to sidewalk ATMs, and only non-braille buttons make it to drive-thrus.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

Simple the man is a midget and on days that it rains he takes an umbrella and can reach the tenth floor button and on sunny days he can only reach the 7th floor button

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

What, he couldnt use a cane? a stick? a pencil?

The real answer is that the rain floods the stairs and he cant take the stairs.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

The man was a midget and could only reach the button to the 7th floor. On days that it rained, he would take his umbrella and use it to punch the 10th floor button, or if someone was in the elevator with him, he would ask them to punch to correct button for him.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

This needs to be qualified as "the dumbest midget in the world" - that would walk three flights of steps, rather than stand on his tippy toes, or jump one inch, or carry a one inch stick, or wait for someone else, or make any sort of arrangements with his living space to not so grossly inconvenience himself on a daily basis. If he's that small I'd have to imagine the the stairs would be quite difficult for him anyway. Far better explanation (and in my opinion more satisfying): it's a normal person that has an illicit relationship with someone else in the building, and doesn't want anyone else to know, and has to change his (or her) clothes when they're wet before arriving.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

The man is not a midget. The elevtor is creepy to him past the sveventh floor unless someone else has pressed the button. also he works for the Minstry of Magic and uses magic to press the buttons so he invites fellow minstry workers so that they can balst the memories of any muggle who sees them useing magic quickly. This happens mostly on rain days because any muggle could easily remember somthing as exciting as seeing magic on any boring rainy day.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

Dear Pedants:

Ok, ok.

This is an old puzzle. When I was very young (and I'm pretty old now), my dad would play "How Come?" This was one of the conumdrums among a whole series. Note that this was before PC crud, when midgets were called midgets, and it was in no way insulting, just fact. If part of the solution requires specifying that the elevator buttons were at such a height that he could reach button 7 and not 8 (maybe in one column only, or starting with "G"round or "P"arking before the first floor button) - those DO exist), and that he didn't mind walking up the last 3 flights as much as he minded carrying an umbrella when it wasn't raining, then it's part of the solution.

K.I.S.S.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

he would be short..so the the button in the elevator coulkd not be used by him.when its raining he would carry an umbrella so he ll use it to make it;)is this right?

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

he would be short..so the the button in the elevator coulkd not be used by him.when its raining he would carry an umbrella so he ll use it to make it;)is this right?

that's right ... fyi, there is solution on the first page of each puzzle (search for "Spoiler for Solution" underneath the puzzle and click on the button that says "Show")

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

In my opinion, the man is too short to press the 10th floor butun and unless there is some one on the elevator to press the butun for him or unless he brings is umberelou to press the buton, he can only press the 7th floor butun.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

What didnt make sense to me is that he could only go to the 7th floor. With that in mind, elevator buttons are usually in even rows so why the 7th floor and not the 6th or higher?? Anyone? I think I have a pretty valid point....

its not 6th floor or any lower because he'd have to walk up loads of flights of stairs

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

yes got it. he is spider man.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

It would make sense if this man was a spy...If there is someone else in the elevator he would not want them to know where he lived...and on a rainy day he would want to make sure his feet were sufficiently dry as not to lead anyone back to his apartment.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

He brings home something from work everyday, and takes it to someone who lives on the seventh floor, then feels like getting some exercise the rest of the way back up?

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

The man is short and so he cannot reach the Elevator buttons that are above 7.

When it rains he should have an umbrella or some stick with him so he can reach the elevator buttons hat aare above 7.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

If it rains or there is someone in the elevator, he goes to the 10th floor. That probably implies that if it does not rain and there is no one in the elevator, he goes to the 7th floor.

The man has a babysitter out of charity. He is very ashamed so if someone else is in the elevator he goes directly to the top floor and calls. The babysitter knows he is ashamed but gladly walks up the stairs once in while. The man makes dinner for this effort. Secretly she has a crush on him so she doesn't mind. When there is no one in the elevator, he calls her and she opens her apartment door so the child can meet the father. It rarely rains (about 5 times a year), but when it does she must go into work because there is always a city problem as the city was not built thinking of rain. Arrangements are made in this case to stay with the man's next door neighbor.

The man lives in a hotel and the elevator has a bellman. The man hates not being served and if no one is in the elevator, he is pissed. He goes directly to the office on the 7th floor and drops a note. He usually gets his way. If it rains and there is no bellman, well that is just typical. The man decides that he will go home, dry off, relax, have a glass of wine and deal with it first thing tomorrow morning. Besides he can't get a clear note written because he is all wet.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

I think I got it.

The man's apartment is on the tenth floor (as stated in the question). However, the elevator goes DIRECTLY into his apartment. This is fine, except there are evil monkeys in there, so he only goes by elevator when there is an armed bodyguard in the lift for him already, or has an umbrella to defend himself with (or the monkeys are scared of water). If neither happens, he must go up the stairs and go through the front door with the body guard there.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

he doesnt want anybody to know where he lives...hes covert :huh:

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
This topic is now closed to further replies.
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.