Two friends were stuck in a cottage. They had nothing to do and thus they started playing cards. Suddenly the power went off and Friend 1 inverted the position of 15 cards in the normal deck of 52 cards and shuffled it. Now he asked Friend 2 to divide the cards into two piles (need not be equal) with equal number of cards facing up. The room was quite dark and Friend 2 could not see the cards. He thinks for a while and then divides the cards in two piles.
On checking, the count of cards facing up is same in both the piles. How could Friend 2 have done it ?
Three men in a cafe order a meal the total cost of which is $15. They each contribute $5. The waiter takes the money to the chef who recognises the three as friends and asks the waiter to return $5 to the men.
The waiter is not only poor at mathematics but dishonest and instead of going to the trouble of splitting the $5 between the three he simply gives them $1 each and pockets the remaining $2 for himself.
Now, each of the men effectively paid $4, the total paid is therefore $12. Add the $2 in the waiters pocket and this comes to $14. Where has the other $1 gone from the original $15?
There is a cryptic organization called Cicada 3301 that posts challenging puzzles online, possibly to recruit codebreakers and linguists.