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02 May 2009

PizzaQ (or MalvoisieQ or MD 20/20Q) -- How much wine did the Cellarer steal? *** IMAGE v.2

Oh yes, please click on this Improved image!

I'll give the title and author
of this book of riddles and puzzles
when somebody furps back the correct answer. (I can't reveal it now because the answers are in the back.)
It seems proper that instead of Pizza, the correct answer to this pretzel is worth a bottle of Malvoisie, if I can find any Malvoisie.
You might have to settle for a flask of MD 20/20 in a brown paper bag.
~ ~ ~
The Riddle of the Cellarer
Then Abbot David looked grave, and said that this incident brought to his mind the painful fact that John the Cellarer had been caught robbing the cask of best Malvoisie that was reserved for special occasions. He ordered him to be brought in.
"Now, varlet," said the Abbot, as the ruddy-faced Cellarer came before him, "though knowest that thou wast taken this morning in the act of stealing good wine that was forbidden thee. What has thou to say for thyself?"
"Prithee, my Lord Abbot, forgive me!" he cried, falling on his knees. "Of a truth, the Evil One did come and tempt me, and the cask was so handy and the wine was so good withal, and -- and I had drunk of it ofttimes without being found out, and --"
"Rascal! That but maketh thy fault the worse! How much wine hast thou taken?"
"Alack-a-day! There were 100 pints in the cask at the start, and I have taken me 1 pint every day this month of June -- it being today the 30th thereof -- and if my Lord Abbot can tell me to a nicety how much good wine I have taken in all, let him punish me as he will."
"Why, knave, that is 30 pints."
"Nay, nay; for each time I drew 1 pint out of the cask, I put in 1 pint of water in its stead!"
It is a curious fact that this is the only riddle in the old record that is not accompanied by its solution. Is it possible that it proved too hard a nut for the monks? There is merely the note, "John suffered no punishment for his sad fault."


patfromch said...

Hm, sounds like someone tried to impersonate Chaucer or Shakepeare here
We have 99 pints, the factor is reduced by 0,99 every day for 30 days

Is there a simpler way than
0,99 x 0,99
0,99 x 0,98
0,99 x 0,97
0.99 x 0,70
and then counting the whole bloody mess together ? This number will have more digits after the comma than the US deficit. My pocket caltulcrot has just given up on me. Blasted thing ! No wonder they gave the cellerar a pardon.....

Vleeptron Dude said...

You're in the right footie stadium. And asking the right questions.

Get new batteries for the calculator, and


(But if you could program ...)

Bernt Ribbum said...

Pat's answer is obviously wrong... I have mailed the solution to Rob, and he can post it here when he sees it fit :-)

patthetroll said...

Yep, that was massive trolling on my part. Understanding has dawned.. One simple bloody flaw in my logical strain of thought up there in the first comment. Quite a revealing experience when it suddenly dawns on you that you are an utter bloody stupid troll. Someone pass me a very big shovel so I can dig a very deep hole 4 myself. I shall revise may calculations and send them to Bob together with the original source of the puzzle. But I need some coffee and nicotine first to cure the pain and humility and self-loathing. And then find a shovel.

Vleeptron Dude said...

I didn't Grok math the first time around either. All my intellectual faculties were in those Youth Days focused entirely on Beauty and a fuzzy sort of Truth, and nothing I was concerned with screamed out for a Scientific Calculator (even though they didn't exist yet).

And now, many years later, please let me assure you that I am not very much far beyond you. If I stop on this picnic table for a smoke, you should catch up with me at any moment.

But here is what I have learned from the math courses I have taken, and the extensive reading I have done in the history of this kind of crap:

THE EXPERIENCE OF LEARNING MATHEMATICS very much resembles being dragged across a hot asphalt parking lot in late July, naked.

Learning this stuff until it makes sense just always, for (almost) everyone, entails Humiliation, Failure, Remorse, Shame, and what's the word for feeling as smart as a garden snail?

In Europe in the late Middle Ages, Aristotelean Logic was taught to every lad at every university.

On the Final Exam, everybody had to answer a question. Most answered it correctly.

But every year, some unfortunate guys would get to their answers via the Pons Asinorum -- the Bridge of Asses.

It is a beautiful bridge made entirely of Wrong Logic. And only Asses can cross this beautiful bridge.

In Real Math College, what you quickly get used to is Failing, or getting a real excretory grade like a D+ , and then immediately next semester taking the course again. First, of course, you have to swallow last semester's Humiliation. You'll probably have the same professor.

I *Really* think it was Rilke who said (not in English):

"Everything valuable is difficult."

But it could have been Plato or ABBA.