• 17-Mar-2004, 11:36
Helped Wanted
My name is Mark. There are four people in my family - there's Dad, Mum, Steven - my little brother and me. There used to be five people in our family. I used to have an older sister, Melissa, who died in a traffic accident.

Q: How many family members did Mark have before Melissa died?

Five, counting Mark himself OR

Four, excluding Mark himself?

• 17-Mar-2004, 11:48
sanny
Quote:

Originally Posted by Helped Wanted
My name is Mark. There are four people in my family - there's Dad, Mum, Steven - my little brother and me. There used to be five people in our family. I used to have an older sister, Melissa, who died in a traffic accident.

Q: How many family members did Mark have before Melissa died?

Five, counting Mark himself OR

Four, excluding Mark himself?

Well Mark, I'm not a teacher, but I think your family counted five, because you're one of the family too, aren't you? :wink:
• 17-Mar-2004, 16:32
Casiopea
Quote:

Originally Posted by Helped Wanted
My name is Mark. There are four people in my family - there's Dad, Mum, Steven - my little brother and me. There used to be five people in our family. I used to have an older sister, Melissa, who died in a traffic accident.

Q: How many family members did Mark have before Melissa died?

Five, counting Mark himself OR

Four, excluding Mark himself?

I was wrong. :(

Thanks Mike :) :) You're right on the money. :)

Notice the use of the pronoun 'our' in "There used to be five people in our family". 'our' includes Mark.

There used to be five people in our family.

Ronbee is also correct in noting the very strange use of what appear to be hyphens used as dashes (-...-):

There are four people in my family - there's Dad (1), Mum (2), Steven - my little brother (3) and me (4).

The hyphens/dashes are used incorrectly. They shouldn't separate 'my little brother and me' from the family list.

All the best,
• 17-Mar-2004, 21:56
MikeNewYork
Quote:

Originally Posted by Helped Wanted
My name is Mark. There are four people in my family - there's Dad, Mum, Steven - my little brother and me. There used to be five people in our family. I used to have an older sister, Melissa, who died in a traffic accident.

Q: How many family members did Mark have before Melissa died?

Five, counting Mark himself OR

Four, excluding Mark himself?

I have to disagree with Cas on this one. The sentence that says there are now four people in the family includes you (Mark). The dash between "Steven" and "little brother" suggests to me that it is one person, a little brother named Steven.

Therefore, the number of family members was 5 and is now 4.

If this is supposed to be a brain teaser and I had to choose between your OR choices, I would go with Four (excluding Mark) on the grounds that a person can't have himself as a family member, even though a family can have him as a member.

If this is not a brain teaser, you may have to tell us what it was. :wink:
• 17-Mar-2004, 22:29
RonBee
Quote:

Q: How many family members did Mark have before Melissa died?
IMO, you can't include Mark. So the answer is four. If you want to include Mark you have to rephrase the question: how many are in Mark's family? Then the answer is five.

:)
• 21-Mar-2004, 06:10
Helped Wanted
Thanks to all teachers for helping! Well, I don't know if it's a brain teasing question cuz it was just a question asked by my teacher...ohlala! ^o^
• 21-Mar-2004, 06:33
Hong Kong Chinese
brain teaser?
Very interesting!
I have mine to make fun with children.

Quote:

There were three birds perching on a twig of an oak tree and a hunter shot dead one bird.

How many birds were there? Or How many bird was there?
• 21-Mar-2004, 06:58
RonBee
Re: brain teaser?
Quote:

Originally Posted by Hong Kong Chinese
Very interesting!
I have mine to make fun with children.

Quote:

There were three birds perching on a twig of an oak tree and a hunter shot dead one bird.

How many birds were there? Or How many bird was there?

How many birds were left? The answer: None. The rest flew away.

:D
• 21-Mar-2004, 17:15
MikeNewYork
Quote:

Originally Posted by Helped Wanted
Thanks to all teachers for helping! Well, I don't know if it's a brain teasing question cuz it was just a question asked by my teacher...ohlala! ^o^