Skip Discover Education Main Navigation

Favorites
Browse the Brain Boosters Gallery

 

  Lateral Thinking

Outsmarting the Donkey
 
Q Amir tied two sacks of salt to the back of his donkey and headed for the market to sell the salt. On the way, Amir and the donkey passed a stream. The donkey jumped in to cool himself. As a result, much of the salt dissolved into the water, ruining the salt for Amir but improving matters for the donkey because his load became much lighter. Amir tried to get to the market on the following days, but the donkey always ruined the salt. Finally, Amir decided to teach the donkey a lesson. He once again set out with the donkey and the two sacks.

What did Amir do differently this time so that after that day the donkey stopped taking a swim?


 
A Amir loaded the sacks not with salt but with sand. When the donkey jumped in the stream and got the sacks wet, they became much heavier.

Source: Inspired by a puzzle inMensa Presents Mighty Brain Teasers,R. Allen & J. Fulton. New York: Barnes and Noble, 1999.