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Ball point pen on todays newsprint

I'm reminded of that folksy New England expression "You can't get there from here."

Read about states fiscal woes

here's a math related quiz.

A car is traveling around a track one mile long .

On the first lap, the car averages 30 mph.
How fast would the car need to travel on the second lap to average 60 mph for both laps?

Answer in the comments.

8 Comments
  1. January 20, 2011 -

    Wow--these sketches have such life in them, Larry.

  2. January 20, 2011 -

    ANSWER: If you thought the answer was 90 mph, that's incorrect. In order to average 60 mph for two miles the vehicle would need to complete the two laps in two minutes. Since the first lap of 30 mph took the entire two minutes, it's impossible to make up the lost time. It can't be done. Sometimes more gas, or more taxes aren't enough

  3. January 20, 2011 -

    Thanks sue

  4. Bud
    June 1, 2011 -

    Although your answer sounds clever, it is mathematically incorrect. The question asks for a total average speed over the 2 laps ... but not over a specific time period, i.e. in 2 minutes. The answer is 2700/29 mph, or 93.10344828 mph. So the moral is more like sometimes it takes more gas (speed) than you think is requires. I'm an engineer. Go figure. LOL

  5. June 1, 2011 -

    Hi Bud, Well, miles per hour is a measurement of distance over time or distance divided by time. Another way of saying 60 miles per hour, is one mile per minute. A car doing 30 miles per hour is traveling at one half mile per minute and would take two minutes to travel the first mile. Even if a car could travel at the speed of light on the second mile, it would finish the two miles in two minutes and 5.4 microseconds, which would put it's average speed for the two miles just a fraction under the 60 miles per hour goal. I'm just an artist, but I believe the time is relevant here.

  6. Bud
    June 8, 2011 -

    You are correct, My takeaway and moral: 1) read the problem more closely 2) if you had put in enough gas to begin with, you probably wouldn't find yourself in a position to play catch up to begin with!

  7. Bud
    June 8, 2011 -

    Or 2b) recognize that you can't do it, cut your losses, save the gas for something else, and pull over for some rest stop eats.

  8. June 8, 2011 -

    Bud said: if you had put in enough gas to begin with, you probably wouldn’t find yourself in a position to play catch up to begin with! ...recognize that you can’t do it, cut your losses, save the gas for something else, and pull over for some rest stop eats. I think that's what some governors have found out. Years of running low on fuel and waiting too long to stop for gas. Now it's too late. So what will it be Bud, pizza or burgers?