Sunday, October 24, 2010

Ask Marilyn

Somewhere at, apparently, they should have today's Ask Marilyn column. Maybe tomorrow it'll be there. Anyhow, here's the third question from her 24 October column in the newspaper, from Paul Klender, along with my accounting:

My brother and I each bought a box of cookies for $3.50. I asked him to pay for mine at the register, and I would reimburse him.

Paul owes his brother $3.50.

Outside, I asked him if he had a $5 bill. He said yes, handed it to me...
Now Paul owes his brother $8.50.

... and I gave him $1.50.

Now Paul owes him $7.00.

This was actually a good joke. If Paul gave his brother $5 and the brother gave Paul $1.50, they'd be even. The numbers are right, but the direction of payments is wrong. That's why the joke works, I think.

He said, I wasn't born yesterday. You still owe me $2 more. I gave him $2 and took the cookies.

The brother knew something wasn't right, but he was confused. Neglecting his own $5, he wants Paul's payment to add up to $3.50.

Paul is still $5 ahead.

I laughed all the way home and couldn't wait to tell my wife. But when I told her I was $5 ahead, she said I was only $1.50 ahead because I gave my brother $3.50....

The wife ignores the cookies-value.

Good one, Paul!

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