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Brainteaser: Directions

(Image credit: Flickr user Eddy Van 3000)

You have to get to the hospital. At a fork in the road, you meet Joe and Moe, a pair of identical twin boys. You can't tell them apart, but you know that Joe always tells the truth and Moe always lies. You can ask one of them only one question. What question will guarantee that you take the correct fork …and which twin do you ask?

Continue reading to find out.

Highlight here for the answer: You ask either of them, ""If I asked your twin which road to take to get to the hospital, which way would he tell me to go?" And then you would take the other road.

Why? If the truth-telling twin tells you what his twin would say, it would be a lie, so the direction indicated would be wrong. The lying twin would lie about what his brother would say, which would be the truth, so the lying twin would also indicate the wrong path.


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The webcomic Order of the Stick did an amusing variant on this: when the heroes are confronted with (essentially) this duo, one of the heroes shoots the first twin in the foot with an arrow.
"Oh gods! She shot me! You crazy bitch, I can't believe you shot me!"
"She absolutely did not shoot you, and I completely expected it!"
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