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Anomalous & Amazing Apt Adages

By William F. Bultas

A well known saying fits each of the following strange situations. The saying could be an adage, a famous line from a story or play, or something colloquial. The saying often fits the situation only by using homonyms, homophones, synonyms, or by warping the original meaning of the saying. If you give all of the problems a try before looking at the answers, you can rank yourself with the scale below. Have fun!

          Number Correct        Adage Aptitude
               0-2                   Low
               3-5                 Average
               6-8              Above Average
               9-11                  High
              12-14                 Superb
              15-17                 Genius
              18-20             Adage Einstein


1. A man finds a bucket full of shining pyrite and exclaims "I'm rich beyond my wildest dreams!"

2. You had a sale on a popular video game at your software store: $45 until 7/25. A man shows up on 7/26 wanting to purchase the game, but he has only $44.

3. An overzealous preacher walks into a bookstore and pulls a book on famous paintings off of the shelf. The front of the book shows a painting of nude men and women, although there are no nude paintings shown elsewhere in the book. He screams "Aha - You are selling pornography! I will burn this book and have you closed down!"

4. A woman finds that her watch is broken. It is a very modern watch and is strangely enough made of cloth. It will cost almost $10 to have the watch repaired, or she could have her boyfriend sew the watch so that it will again function.

5. A teenager is 'getting down' with his girlfriend at a dance hall. He has done the Mambo, Watusi, Lambada, Waltz, and Fox-trot to name a few. He is preparing to do yet another dance, but his dance partner curtly informs him that this particular dance will require him to pay a $2 fee.

6. Ann puts on a thick leather glove and chases a bee that has gotten into her house. When she skillfully catches it, her boyfriend hugs her, and says "in this light, your eye is gorgeous."

7. Norm is playing fetch with his dog Easy. He calls the dog to him, then throws a stick for the dog to fetch. Norm calls the dog to him again, throws the stick, and so on.

8. A deaf man awakens one day to find that his hearing has returned. The next day he leaves town on vacation to celebrate this miraculous occurrence.

9. Several students at Harvord High School are writing essays of exactly 1,000 words for a contest. The winner will receive an autographed photo of famous author Steven Kingly.

10. Betty and Jacob Rong have been driving west all night to meet their aunt, Miss Takin, in California. They come to a highway that runs north and south, and although their map shows that the shortest route would be to the north, they go south.

11. A college student was told that his new roommate in the dorm would be named Never. Distraught, he walks to the window, opens it, turns and says "it's better this way," and leaps from the 21st floor to his death.

12. Kate felt rejected. "Linda, am I not your favorite companion?" "No," replied Linda, as she put on her diamond necklace, to go with her rings and bracelets.

13. Christy's date took her to the Point, where she had to push him away after he left teeth marks on her neck. After that, she did not have the nerve to accept the invitations of either of the boys who asked her to the prom; she claimed she had to wash her hair that night.

14. Eric used a 1 cent coupon at the grocery store. At work the next day, he noticed a 1 cent raise on his paycheck.

15. Mark went to sleep at 7:00 PM, and got up at 3:00 AM the next morning. As a result, he was now in excellent physical shape, extremely rich, and sagacious.

16. Farmer Brown told a prospective buyer that she would have 200 chickens to sell him the next week. But when the buyer checked back, only 175 were available. Brown miscalculated because she assumed some chicks would be born by this time that turned out to still be in their shells.

17. A couple of truckers got together to work on their tax returns. One said to the other "can you hand me that 1040?" The other did as requested, saying "104, pleasant friend!"

18. Juan's wife gave him an excellent new awl to use on his job. After a couple of years of use, the tool was fairly worn out. Juan offered his services for a day to a hardware store owner in exchange for a brand new awl.

19. Officer O'Mally pulled up at the Brokenlamp Apartment Complex in response to a call regarding a household disturbance. He went in, looking for apartment 2B, where the disturbance had purportedly taken place. He found an apartment from which loud voices could be heard, but there was no number on the door. An older man approached O'Mally, inquiring as to whether he could be of any assistance. "Is or is not this 2B? That's what I'm asking," said O'Mally.

20. Erica's two dogs are extremely unique. They are actually able to speak while they sleep, but nothing that they say is ever true. Erica has considered taking her dogs to a canine psychologist to correct this bizarre problem, but she figures that as long as they do not engage in this behavior while they are awake, she won't make an issue of it.

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