# Christmas quizzes 2011/12

## The truth sifted from the twaddle, and how to compute the Ultimate Answer

Each day we added three statements to the following list. Not all the statements were true! All you needed to do was make a note, from day to day, of the number of any statement that you considered to be true. Some days there were one true statement, some days there were more than one. There were never zero, and there were fifteen correct statements altogether. Detailed 'how to play' instructions were here.

We hope you didn't make any hasty decisions. There might have been small inaccuracies in an otherwise-faultless statement; and if there were, that whole statement was untrue overall. We might well have taken something that looks true, and mischievously distorted it by changing some tiny detail. And we might have selected something that looked deeply improbable, but was in fact correct in every particular.

Here are the answers, which almost every competitor must have got right, since almost all the Ultimate Answers we received were correct. Sorry it was so painfully straightforward ... won't happen again!

We asked you to write down the numbers of all the fifteen true statements above, add up the odd numbers (‘Total A’) and separately add up all the even numbers (‘Total B’).

Total A:  1 + 5 + 11 + 13 + 17 + 21 + 23 + 25 + 29 + 33 + 35 = 213

Total B: 2 + 8 + 14 + 28 = 52

Next you had to find the separate ‘digital roots’ of Total A and Total B.

Total A:  2 + 1 + 3 = 6

Total B:  5 + 2 = 7

The two single-digit numbers, derived from Total A and Total B, were to be converted into letters of the alphabet, using the system A=1, B=2, C=3 … etc.

Total A:  6 = F

Total B:  7 = G

Now you had to find the only Procol Harum song that has those two letters as its initials:

Fools Gold

(In the worked example, the letters derived from the two Totals were ‘D’ and ‘A’: for Douglas Adams, part of whose name is also visible in the page-background)

We asked you to write down the two words of the title separately, and find a number-value for each word, again using the system A=1, B=2, C=3 etc.

F + O + O + L + S = 6 + 15 + 15 + 12 + 19 = 67

G + O + L + D = 7 + 15 + 12 + 4 = 38

Now you had to take these two numbers derived from the title-words and work out their digital roots

6 + 7 = 13; 1 + 3 = 4

3 + 8 = 11; 1 + 1 = 2

Lastly, you had to put the two numbers side-by-side to make a two-digit number ... the answer is 42 ... which is the same as the answer to our last quiz, by an astonishing coincidence, perhaps.

If you were in the quickest three correct entrants (on a beat-the-clock basis) you got your prime choice of the prizes. After that, all correct entries received in the following 24 hours – and they were almost all correct this year, so trivially easy were the questions – were placed in the BtP Homburg, and the remaining winners were drawn by a suitably Glamorous Assistant (subject to taste).