A Riddle


#1

Post riddles/brain-teasers/etc. or solve them! (Suggest putting solutions in [spoiler][/spoiler] tags.)

The joshery around porn for typographers reminded me of this one. It’s carved into a big wooden sign in Lincoln, NH:

IF THE BMT PUT :

IF THE B . PUTTING :

DON’T PUT : OVER A-DER

YOU’D BE AN * IT


#2

All I can get is you’d be an *:=“ass to risk” it


#3

This might be closer, but I think it needs some work:

If the grate be empty, put coal on
If the grate be [?], stop putting coal on
Don’t put coal on over a high fender
You’d be an ass to risk it

ETA: It’s a full stop, not a stop. If the grate be full, stop putting coal on


#4

Yep, got it in one!


#5

I have a CD that has Leonard Nimoy and John DeLancie arguing, in character as Spock and Q respectively, about whether the Earth should be saved from an incoming asteroid.

Part of the discussion is a riddle game, and of the riddles, this is my favourite:

Everyone knows me.
Once, it is rumoured, a man drank his fill of me (much to his regret).
Others prefer me in small doses for small ailments.
Some describe me as an age, a tongue, the sky, the land
Fire, bird, fish, flower.
I am captive; I am free;
Loved and eschewed,
Pure and corrupt,
Black and white.
I am found in the deepest mine and on the highest mountain,
I am animal, vegetable, mineral.

Who am I?


#6

Scotch?

(I should add a :wink:)


#7

Is it

[spoiler]gold?

(Midas drank gold, a golden age, a golden tongue, goldfinch, goldfish, marigold, pure gold, black gold, white gold…)

Not sure how it fits some of the others…
[/spoiler]


#8

Yep, you got it.

The man who regretted drinking gold is Marcus Licinius Crassus Dives. Gold salts are an arthritis remedy. A gold sky, and golden fields are two you missed. It is captive in mines, running free in streams. How it is loved and eschewed are obvious, and gold itself is pure, but it wields a corrupting influence.


#9

A classic from Tolkien:

A box without hinges, key or lid
Yet golden treasure inside is hid


#10

An egg?


#11

But, of course!

And easily Googled.


#12

I didn’t cheat! But I did guess that it would be something simple that would be familiar to a normal person here and on Middle Earth.


#13

Here’s one from Stephen King:

There is a thing that nothing is,
And yet it has a name.
It’s sometimes tall, sometimes short,
Joins our talks, joins our sport,
And plays at every game?


#14

This is a bit of a long shot, but is it

[spoiler]order?

(Tall order, short order, it’s not a thing in itself, but without it you can’t have language or games)[/spoiler]


#15

Nope, sorry, but good guess. Keep trying.


#16

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