Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Logic Problem

A situation similar to one in logic books:
I stood before two lab'rinth guards identical in looks

A placard stood before them; it should come as no surprise
it said "one guard tells only truths - the other only lies.

A single question's all you get to figure out your way
So ponder carefully and work out what you want to say."

I thought awhile to no avail, and could not work it out
What could I ask to get the truth and not be filled with doubt?

Instead I walked up to the guards - each drew a wicked knife -
and asked as plainly as I could "do you enjoy this life?"

The guards looked shocked, they stood awhile, making no reply.
Then suddenly they dropped their knives and both began to cry.

They pulled themselves together, and one said, through his tears
"No one's ever asked us that, not in all our years!"

"that's wrong!" the other one replied, but winked so I would know
that he's the guard who always lies. "Am I UNhappy? No!"

"That sounds so sad," I sympathized. "Don't you have any friends?"
"The only people that we've met are corpses in dead ends!"

I gave them Kleenex, and we chatted for a good long while.
And when I asked them where to go they told me with a smile

I started, halted, turned around, asked them to come with me.
They left their posts, we left the maze, all happy to be free.

The moral of this poem is: With problems facing you,
logic is an awesome force, but being nice is, too.

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