# Stepping up

### By Mukul Sharma

Published: Sun 9 Oct 2016, 6:00 PM

Last updated: Sun 9 Oct 2016, 8:16 PM

E4
What you have to do is evaluate each of the 10 following statements and say which is the only one amongst them that is true. It's not easy. But then neither is life.
(1) Exactly one statement on this list is false. (2) Exactly two statements on this list are false. (3) Exactly three statements on this list are false. (4) Exactly four statements on this list are false. (5) Exactly five statements on this list are false. (6) Exactly six statements on this list are false. (7) Exactly seven statements on this list are false. (8) Exactly eight statements on this list are false. (9) Exactly nine statements on this list are false. (10) Exactly ten statements on this list are false.
DEAR MS
(The question was: "I've written my name in 1 cm letters with a pen without any other help than my naked hands. I can make the letters grow and then make them decrease to their original size. Also, I can destroy the letters and rejoin them. Where did I write it?" - MS)
Page-Marks-Dept:
Come on, we all did this in school! Take a pen and write your name on the page-edge side of a book. Now you can enlarge it by fluffing the page-edge out and you can destroy the writing by simply opening out the book at any page without destroying the writing because when you close the book, there it is.
- Dhruv Narayan, dhruv510@gmail.com
You have written on normal paper, but you are looking through a magnifying glass!
- Surya Narayanan Krishna Moorthy, surya661666@yahoo.com
(The second one was: "If you're allowed to climb either one or two steps at a time, what are the total number of ways you can ascend a flight of 14 steps?" - MS)
Taking-Baby-Steps-Dept:
Let x be the number of times climbing one step and y be climbing two steps. The total number of steps is 14. The number of climbs can vary from 7 to 14.  Therefore, the possible values of (x, y) are (14, 0), (12, 1), (10, 2), (8, 3), (6, 4), (4, 5), (2, 6), (0, 7). By permutations and combinations, we get the total number of ways it can be done for each pair is 1 + 13 + 66 + 165 + 210 + 126 + 28 + 1 = 610 ways.
- Priyanka Awatramani,priyankag1010@gmail.com
(The third problem was: "Why is it that tea leaves at the bottom of a glass or cup (which means that they're heavier than water) don't move towards the walls under the influence of centrifugal force when stirred but assemble at the centre of the bottom?" - MS)
Tea-For-Two-Dept:
Incredibly, two of the world's most famous scientists Albert Einstein and Erwin Schrödinger scratched their heads on this one. Finally, Einstein managed to solve it and wrote an article on it in 1933. According to him, the momentum does move the tea leaves to the sides of the cup. But the friction between the liquid and the surface of the cup slows down the tea leaves at the sides and the bottom of the cup. And when the liquid stops turning, the tea leaves settle at the bottom of the cup. (And we thought it was just a cup of tea!)
- Saurabh Sunil, saurabhsunil7@gmail.com
Momentum does move the tea leaves towards the sides of the cup. But friction between the liquid and the sides slows down the tea leaves at the sides and base of the cup. And as the liquid stops turning, the leaves fall towards the centre of the cup.
ENDGAME(S)
Mukul can be reached at mukul.mindsport@gmail.com

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