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Midsummer Puzzles 

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It's that time of the solstice when days start to get shorter and Journal readers get to sharpen their brains with Ye Olde Puzzle Edition. Check back in next week's issue for the answers.

Let's start with an easy one:

The mistake

Pedal to the metal

A car goes 30 mph for 1 mile. How fast must it go in the next mile to average 60 mph for the entire 2-mile trip?

Four fours

This one can be savored, like a crossword. Write equations with four 4s to make the numbers 0-13, using the standard arithmetical symbols + - × ÷ √ ( ) . and ! (where 5! = 5 × 4 × 3 × 2 × 1). Bonus for doing them in more than one way. (Remember the PEMDAS order: Parentheses, Exponents, Multiplication and Division, left to right; Addition and Subtraction, left to right.)

So, for instance, 18 = 44 × .4 + .4; while 100 = 4! × 4 + √4 + √4

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Special Words

What's special about the words "job," "polish" and (unless you're a Brit), "herb?"


For geometry buffs. What's the area of the blue square if the radius of the quadrant is 1 unit?


No set of puzzles would be complete with a matchstick challenge. Move one match to make the two sides equal. I give two solutions.

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Barry Evans (he/him, [email protected]) considers the late Martin Gardner the greatest puzzler of all time.

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About The Author

Barry Evans

Barry Evans

Barry Evans lives in Old Town Eureka with his girlfriend (and wife) Louisa Rogers, several kayaks and bikes, and a stuffed gorilla named “Nameless.” A recovering civil engineer, he is the author of two McGraw-Hill popular science books and has taught science and history. His Field Notes anthologies are available... more

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