Sunday, July 29, 2012

A riddle!

Written for Sunday Scribblings and Carry on Tuesday. It's actually a re-working of a story I posted some time ago, so it may seem familiar!

Jimmy didn't remember dying, but clearly he had because he was standing a short distance away from a corpse spread-eagled on the pavement that bore an uncanny resemblance to himself. A brace of paramedics were shaking their heads and packing their implements away, and a passing priest had stopped and was prodding himself with the sign of the cross.

 “Excuse me sir” said a voice from behind. He turned round to see what looked like a ghost in a policeman’s uniform. “You’ve nearly finished life’s journey sir, just a short distance to go”.  “No chance of a swift pint at the Dog and Duck before I leave I suppose? “said Jimmy. The policeman shook his head and pointed into the distance. “Walk that way sir. After a few minutes you’ll arrive at a crossroads. One direction leads to heaven, and the opposite way goes to hell”.

“Is there a signpost?” asked Jimmy. “No” replied the policeman, “But standing at the crossroads you will find identical twin brothers, Tom and Tim who will help you on your way. The problem is that whilst Tim always tells the truth, Tom always lies and nobody can tell which twin is which. The thing is, you are only able to ask them one question each, and it has to be the same question – so the question is, what question will you ask?” And with that everybody disappeared.

Jimmy was no fool and on his way to the crossroads he came up with the perfect question, and right now he’s propping up the bar in the Celestial Arms being served ale by angels!

So dear reader, what question did he ask? If you are unsure, you’ll find the answer below the picture! 

He simply said to each of the twins “Which road would your brother tell me leads to heaven?" Think about it!

Still not sure? Well, let’s suppose the right fork led to heaven. If you were to ask the truthful brother to tell you what his lying brother would say, he’d have to answer left.
If you asked the lying brother what his truthful twin would say he’d also answer left!
Jimmy simply had to take the opposite road to the one he was told and head right.
And if you are still confused, I give up!
Picture 'Crossroads' by Xiil at deviantART


  1. Yes, I have heard a variation of this one. However I am not quite sure which would be the best for me!

  2. wow ! I must admit I had to check out the explanation ! it was good ...

  3. And that makes perfect sense! But I didn't think of it.

  4. this riddle reminded me of the scene in Labyrinth when she had to ask the door guards which one was lying great job really enjoyed this

  5. Took me a minute or two, and i have actually heard this one before! It was a compelling, yet fun story....

  6. Fun story! I had never heard the riddle (or ones like it ) before now, but it didn't take long to appreciate its cleverness

  7. Oooh, a very clever riddle indeed, and a great storyline behind it!

  8. LOL... I hope I never have to ask a question... a fun read Keith, thanks.

  9. Ha. This was cute. I'll have to read this to my husband. Enjoyed.

  10. very good!!!



Dear WORDPRESS friends. If you are having difficulty posting please 'Comment as' either:-

a) Name/URL
b) Anonymous with your name included in your comment.

Thank you!