[WiZ] Breakfast Epiphanies

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[WiZ] Breakfast Epiphanies

Postby WiZ » Thu May 24, 2018 8:33 pm

Two biology professors are seated with their team at their weekly pub quiz. They are tied for first place leading into the final round. Tensions are high.

The last question of the night comes up. 'Aha!' says the first professor immediately. He leans forward and writes 'rat' on the paper. His teammates nod approvingly.

'Wait!' cries the second professor. He crosses out 'rat' and writes 'butterfly'. His colleague, and the rest of his team, look at him like he has grown an extra head. But he is correct.

How did the two come to disagree? And what was the question?

Based on a true story that happened to me and my pub quiz team, Breakfast Epiphanies. Caveat Earlispoilor.
Last edited by WiZ on Mon May 28, 2018 8:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: [WiZ] Breakfast Epiphanies

Postby Enjay » Thu May 24, 2018 8:41 pm

Is the question a biology question? Did "rat" and "butterfly" refer to the animals?

Do the two professors have different specialities which led them to come up with the two different answers?
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Re: [WiZ] Breakfast Epiphanies

Postby WiZ » Thu May 24, 2018 8:47 pm

Is the question a biology question? yope Did "rat" and "butterfly" refer to the animals? yes

Do the two professors have different specialities which led them to come up with the two different answers? no
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Re: [WiZ] Breakfast Epiphanies

Postby Tiger » Thu May 24, 2018 10:06 pm

Is it relevant that "to rat" and "to butterfly" have meanings as verbs?

Is rat also a technically correct answer, but butterfly is the better answer?
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Re: [WiZ] Breakfast Epiphanies

Postby WiZ » Thu May 24, 2018 10:31 pm

Is it relevant that "to rat" and "to butterfly" have meanings as verbs? No, although this is interesting

Is rat also a technically correct answer, but butterfly is the better answer? 'rat' isn't technically correct, although a more generous quizmaster might have accepted it.
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Re: [WiZ] Breakfast Epiphanies

Postby invisiblemimsy » Thu May 24, 2018 10:41 pm

Is it something to do with the nature of a rat and a butterfly? Is it to do with biology, or not? One mimicking the other? Is it a photo question?
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Re: [WiZ] Breakfast Epiphanies

Postby WiZ » Thu May 24, 2018 10:51 pm

Is it something to do with the nature of a rat and a butterfly? Very obliquely Is it to do with biology, or not? no (it would not be part of a 'biology' round, for instance) One mimicking the other? no Is it a photo question? no
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Re: [WiZ] Breakfast Epiphanies

Postby invisiblemimsy » Thu May 24, 2018 11:06 pm

Metaphors or similes relevant, e.g. 'float like a butterfly, sting like a bee'?
Are we talking about the creatures themselves? Or about something else which has become known as 'the rat' or 'the butterfly', e.g. dance moves, chess moves?
Is it something which the rat and butterfly can both do, but the butterfly can do better, more prolifically or something?
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Re: [WiZ] Breakfast Epiphanies

Postby WiZ » Thu May 24, 2018 11:10 pm

Metaphors or similes relevant, e.g. 'float like a butterfly, sting like a bee'? Metaphors are relevant, good question
Are we talking about the creatures themselves? yes Or about something else which has become known as 'the rat' or 'the butterfly', e.g. dance moves, chess moves? no
Is it something which the rat and butterfly can both do, but the butterfly can do better, more prolifically or something? no
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Re: [WiZ] Breakfast Epiphanies

Postby invisiblemimsy » Thu May 24, 2018 11:44 pm

Dreams relevant? Zhuangzi's butterfly?
Metamorphosis, rebirth, transformation, Butterfly effect?
Butterfly and rat in folklore?
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Re: [WiZ] Breakfast Epiphanies

Postby WiZ » Thu May 24, 2018 11:45 pm

Dreams relevant? Zhuangzi's butterfly?
Metamorphosis, rebirth, transformation, Butterfly effect?
Butterfly and rat in folklore? no to all
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Re: [WiZ] Breakfast Epiphanies

Postby invisiblemimsy » Fri May 25, 2018 12:24 am

Is it a metaphor that could theoretically apply to both creatures?
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Re: [WiZ] Breakfast Epiphanies

Postby WiZ » Fri May 25, 2018 12:31 am

Is it a metaphor that could theoretically apply to both creatures? No - indeed there is more than one metaphor involved...
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Re: [WiZ] Breakfast Epiphanies

Postby Enjay » Fri May 25, 2018 6:28 am

Is there a relevant metaphor that involves a rat and another that involves a butterfly? Do the relevant metaphors compare something else to a rat/butterfly?

Are any particular characteristics of those animals relevant? Eg that rats are associated with dirtiness and disease? Butterflies are associated with beauty, grace and transformation?
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Re: [WiZ] Breakfast Epiphanies

Postby peter365 » Fri May 25, 2018 7:31 am

Any relevant cultural references?
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Re: [WiZ] Breakfast Epiphanies

Postby Zanreo » Fri May 25, 2018 7:44 am

Metaphors are relevant... Was the question something like "what animal is used in this expression?" "An expression for/to describe [......] mentions an animal, which one?" Something about the animals' looks or behavior?
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Re: [WiZ] Breakfast Epiphanies

Postby rcb » Fri May 25, 2018 9:23 am

References to music / poetry relevant?

Could the puzzle work if the two were math professors? Philosophy professors?

Relevant who and how determines the "correct" answer? Is it a subjective or rather an objective decision? Maybe based on consent of the audience?

Was the question phrased something like "A is to B as X is to C?" (with A, B, C known) and one of the teams chose X = "rat" while the other X = "butterfly"?
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Re: [WiZ] Breakfast Epiphanies

Postby WiZ » Mon May 28, 2018 12:31 am

Enjay

Is there a relevant metaphor that involves a rat and another that involves a butterfly? yes Do the relevant metaphors compare something else to a rat yes/butterfly? yes, more obliquely

Are any particular characteristics of those animals relevant? yes Eg that rats are associated with dirtiness and disease? no Butterflies are associated with beauty yes, grace stronger yes and transformation? no

Peter

Any relevant cultural references? yes

Zanreo

Metaphors are relevant... Was the question something like "what animal is used in this expression?" Yes, it was along those lines. But 'expression' isn't quite right "An expression for/to describe [......] mentions an animal, which one?" Format-wise, this is how it was posed Something about the animals' looks no or behavior? yes

Rcb

References to music yes!/ poetry no (other than lyrics being arguably a form of poetry, but I go down this rabbit hole enough on the February Album Writing Month forums :) ) relevant?

Could the puzzle work if the two were math professors? Philosophy professors? Yes to all.

Relevant who and how determines the "correct" answer? see next answer Is it a subjective or rather an objective decision? There is a correct answer, but an incorrect answer that is popular enough that the quizmaster might accept it on the basis of diplomacy. Mine didn't. Maybe based on consent of the audience? see previous answer

Was the question phrased something like "A is to B as X is to C?" (with A, B, C known) and one of the teams chose X = "rat" while the other X = "butterfly"? no
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Re: [WiZ] Breakfast Epiphanies

Postby peter365 » Mon May 28, 2018 7:28 am

So song lyrics are relevant? Are the lyrics misheard? Do they actually contain the word Rat? Butterfly? Do they appear in the same song?
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Re: [WiZ] Breakfast Epiphanies

Postby WiZ » Mon May 28, 2018 7:36 am

So song lyrics are relevant? Yes Are the lyrics misheard? no Do they actually contain the word Rat? yes Butterfly? no Do they appear in the same song? yope!
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Re: [WiZ] Breakfast Epiphanies

Postby Zanreo » Mon May 28, 2018 9:29 am

Song lyrics... "An animal is described in this song, which one?" Do the song lyrics mention/describe a butterfly without actually using the word? Is the "rat" mentioned in the song not actually a rat?

Yope to same song - different versions of the song? One that mentions both and one that doesn't?
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Re: [WiZ] Breakfast Epiphanies

Postby Westing1992 » Mon May 28, 2018 2:04 pm

Was "rat" the only thing written down/crossed out? Was "butterfly" the only thing that it was replaced with?

"Bullet with Butterfly Wings"/"Despite all my rage, I am still just a rat in a cage"? The question asked what the name of the song was, and everyone thought it was "Rat in a Cage", except the second professor who knew the real name?
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Re: [WiZ] Breakfast Epiphanies

Postby WiZ » Mon May 28, 2018 8:34 pm

Zanreo

Song lyrics... "An animal is described in this song, which one?" Do the song lyrics mention/describe a butterfly without actually using the word? no, it doesn't appear in the lyrics Is the "rat" mentioned in the song not actually a rat? it's a metaphor involving a literal rat

Yope to same song - different versions of the song? no One that mentions both and one that doesn't? no

Westing

Was "rat" the only thing written down/crossed out? Was "butterfly" the only thing that it was replaced with? yes to both

"Bullet with Butterfly Wings"/"Despite all my rage, I am still just a rat in a cage"? Yes! The question asked what the name of the song was, and everyone thought it was "Rat in a Cage", except the second professor who knew the real name? Correct!

***** SPOILER *****

In the last round, a series of music clips were played. The contestants were asked to name the animal in the title of the song. A clip of the chorus of The Smashing Pumpkins' 'Bullet with Butterfly Wings' was played; a chorus which famously goes 'Despite all my rage, I am still just a rat in a cage'. The first professor wrote down the animal named in the chorus, but the second professor remembered that this chorus did not lend itself to the title.


Congratulations, Westing, on the solution, and thank you everyone for playing!
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Re: [WiZ] Breakfast Epiphanies [SHOOK DOWN, 1979]

Postby invisiblemimsy » Tue May 29, 2018 12:34 pm

Genius. Thanks Wiz!
Are you a biology professor?
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Re: [WiZ] Breakfast Epiphanies [SHOOK DOWN, 1979]

Postby WiZ » Tue May 29, 2018 8:44 pm

No, that detail is unique to the puzzle :)

My team answered 'rat', as we recognised the song and the chorus. But we were all just slightly too young to remember what the song title was, even though the track itself is firmly entrenched as an iconic 90s rock song and was played on several stations.
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