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Author Topic: "I turn polar bears white" riddle
snopes
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Comment: I received this riddle in my inbox and wondered if you guys had
the answer because this riddle kept me thinking for hours.

I turn polar bears white
and I will make you cry.
I make guys have to pee
and girls comb their hair.
I make celebrities look stupid
and normal people look like celebrities.
I turn pancakes brown
and make your champane bubble.
If you sqeeze me, I'll pop.
If you look at me, you'll pop.
Can you guess the riddle?

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Em
Happy Holly Days


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I'd say the answer is "No".

The only question actually asked is "Can you guess the riddle?" No, I can't.

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What the NFBSK does YOMANK mean?

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El Camino
We Three Blings


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Actually, the answer is yes. I can guess, I just (probably) can't guess correctly. I guess that the riddle is Jackie Chan. So, in summary, "yes."
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eif
Jingle Bell Hock


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I would guess "Air" or Cold air

I turn polar bears white - hair is hollow full of air
and I will make you cry. -A cold wind can make you cry
I make guys have to pee - a cold breeze if you are exposed
and girls comb their hair. - wind will mess up hair
I make celebrities look stupid - same -wind will mess up hair
and normal people look like celebrities. - Sometimes wind will cause that "wind blown look"
I turn pancakes brown - turning brown when cooking is because of heat induced oxydation
and make your champane bubble. - CO2
If you sqeeze me, I'll pop. - air in bubble wrap
If you look at me, you'll pop. - this last one I'm not sure of. If you look into the wind do your eyes pop? Looking into the wind when trying to hit a baseball make you pop-up?

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Where I come from we believe all sorts of things that aren't true. We call it History.

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landmammal
Deck the Malls


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I was thinking maybe air too. I could see it for the champagne & pancakes, but not for the others. It works well for the celebrity stuff and the hair combing, but I thought the reflection of the sunlight made the bears look white. Their hair is clear, and I don't see how air inside would make it look white.

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I can't put my arms down!

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Em
Happy Holly Days


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Light, perhaps? That would cover all the colour or appearance-based items, but still doesn't help with guys peeing, champagne bubbles or popping.

There's no guarantee that there is an answer. For example:


I cause runny noses,
and help running athletes.
I make great chocolate cake
but I don't like to eat them.
I can be multiplied by three,
but I'm not made of paper.
I write nonsensical lists
and hope people spend hours trying to make sense of them.

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What the NFBSK does YOMANK mean?

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Anyte
Jingle Bell Hock


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Chuck Norris.

Maybe something like "nature" ...polar bears are white, it's their natural state. It is also perfectly natural to cry, to have to urinate, and for celebrities to look stupid. [Big Grin]

It's a pretty terrible riddle, I'd be willing to back Em and El Camino's answers.

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Too broke to pay attention

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eif
Jingle Bell Hock


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quote:
Originally posted by landmammal:
I was thinking maybe air too. I could see it for the champagne & pancakes, but not for the others. It works well for the celebrity stuff and the hair combing, but I thought the reflection of the sunlight made the bears look white. Their hair is clear, and I don't see how air inside would make it look white.

It's because they are hollow (and filled with air). They appear white for the same reason table salt appears white. Internal scattering of light. A large single crystal of salt is clear like glass.

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Where I come from we believe all sorts of things that aren't true. We call it History.

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landmammal
Deck the Malls


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Okay, that makes sense. Best answer so far, I think.

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I can't put my arms down!

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Em
Happy Holly Days


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Eyeballs? Except for the peeing bit.

ETA: In the sense that without eyeballs neither pancakes nor polar bears have any apparent colour, looks wouldn't matter so nobody would bother combing their hair or comparing themselves to celebrities, you wouldn't be able to see the bubbles in the champagne, and attempting to look at your own eyeball without using a mirror would result in serious physical injury.

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What the NFBSK does YOMANK mean?

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landmammal
Deck the Malls


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It could be eyeballs. I've heard guys say stuff like, "I gotta whiz- my eyeballs are floating."

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I can't put my arms down!

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Pseudo_Croat
Angels Wii Have Heard on High


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It's time.

Polar bears (IIRC) are born yellowish, and turn white when they grow up (which takes time);

When old folks reminisce of times gone by, it can make them cry;

It takes time to fill a man's bladder after having a few beers;

A lady's hair can gets pretty mussed up after a few hours of not combing it;

Age and time blunt the talents of celebrities;

Likewise, it takes time to practice one's art, which is a good way to become a celebrity;

It takes time to cook pancakes and to ferment grapes into wine;

If you try to squeeze too much into an hour or day you'll feel like it "popped" or has passed you by;

And if you look too long at time and its vastness, your brain will feel like it's "popped" from all the stress.

- Pseudo "this thing all things devours" Croat

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"At all events, people who deny the influence of smaller nations should remember that the Croats have the rest of us by the throats." - Norman Davies, Europe: A History

God wants spiritual fruits, not religious nuts.

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Grand Illusion
Jingle Bell Hock


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I'll be real disappointed if time is the answer, especially because I'm a Middle Earth fan, and because it would be too generic.

I might guess a camera flash. It fits in somewhat well. I've included some explanation below, but there are a few ???'s that I can't figure out. Can anyone follow my lead on this and help determine if that's the answer or if I'm on the right track?

I turn polar bears white - Polar bears aren't pure white, but a camera's flash will make thier coats shine like pure white.

I will make you cry - People get sentimental for pictures

I make guys have to pee - It's tough to sit still for a picture being taken

and girls comb their hair - Must primp before a photo

I make celebrities look stupid - Photos of Britney adjusting her bra in public

and normal people look like celebrities. - glamour shots

I turn pancakes brown - ???

and make your champane bubble - ???

If you sqeeze me, I'll pop - Light bulbs pop when squeezed

If you look at me, you'll pop. - You're blinded if you look into a flash

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"Are you pondering what I'm pondering?" - The Brain

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NocturnalGoddess- naughty or nice?
Carol of the Dells


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I was also thinking "tubes"

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"I saw weird stuff in that place last night. Weird, strange, sick, twisted, eerie, godless, EVIL stuff... and I want in."- Homer Simpson

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Squishy0405
Wii Wiish You A Merry Chriistmas


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I was thinking the anwser was "nothing" like that "what is greater than god and if u eat it you will die" one...but that's a good point EM
like the stupid test [lol]

ETA: I thought polar bears' skin was black and the reflection from the sun made their hair look white...but sun doesn't fit well.

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"Fate is like a strange, unpopular resturant, filled with odd waiters who bring you things you never ask for and don't always like."-Lemony Snicket

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NocturnalGoddess- naughty or nice?
Carol of the Dells


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Though I still say the real answer is "no"

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"I saw weird stuff in that place last night. Weird, strange, sick, twisted, eerie, godless, EVIL stuff... and I want in."- Homer Simpson

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Elwood
Little Sales Drummer Boy


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I still think it is a trick question but "pressure" answers most of them, though I'm less sure about the polar bear part.

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"If I didn't see it and didn't know it was a real news report, I wouldn't believe it. I mean, how nutty can you get?"-Pat Robertson Oct 26, 2006.

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Stoneage Dinosaur
We Wish You a Merry Giftmas


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The following bit is on the end of some versions of the riddle:

97% of Harvard graduates can not figure this riddle out, but 84% of kindergarten students were able to figure this out in 6 minutes or less.

So judging from that, the people who have been saying that the answer is "no" are probably correct.

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"You learn something new every day if you're not careful" - Wilf Lunn

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snopes
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Comment: RE: 'I turn polar bears white' Riddle

The riddle is derived from the children's poem below.

---------------------------------

TIME

The time has come,
winter is here
and those yellow bears disappear.

The time has past
as man looks back with a sigh
and a tear in his eye.

As time is held
boys cross their legs
but of course the toilet begs

As time marches on
Girls loose their blush
and swap a comb for their brush

As time passes
For those held high
their end is nigh

As time catches up
Everyone is equal
when we get to the final sequel

As time turns
Without it we have flour and water
With it we have breakfast for my daughter

As time revolves
How does one turn water and wine
into something so fine

As time runs out
The more in a minute you try and squeeze
the less you can do with ease.

As time ticks
All the time that has past
man cannot comprehend something so vast.

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magpie
Deck the Malls


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But the question "Can you guess this riddle?" is not a riddle, the same way "What time is it?" is not a riddle.

My guess would be "god" because that's a cheap and easy answer.

EDIT:
Ok, even after seeing the answer I don't think "time" really solves the riddle. Someone took an awful lot of liberties with this one.

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snopes
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quote:
But the question "Can you guess this riddle?" is not a riddle
No, it isn't. It's what turns the poem that precedes it into a riddle.

- snopes

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Squishy0405
Wii Wiish You A Merry Chriistmas


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"Cuz time won't give me time, and time makes lovers feel"... That's what I think of when I heard it could be time [Razz]

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"Fate is like a strange, unpopular resturant, filled with odd waiters who bring you things you never ask for and don't always like."-Lemony Snicket

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CornChex
Katrina -na-na-na, -na-na-na-na, hey-hey-hey, goodbye


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I think the answer might be "a stomach virus".

"I turn polar bears white" -- they turn pale from dehydration

"and I will make you cry" -- been there, done that

"I make guys have to pee" -- after they drink a lot of clear liquids

"and girls comb their hair" -- after they take their foreheads off the toilet seat

"I make celebrities look stupid" -- like when George Bush threw up on the Japanese prime minister' shoes.

"and normal people look like celebrities" -- you might look like Tom Hanks in "Philadelphia" or Ali McGraw in "Love Story"

"I turn pancakes brown" -- when they turn to diarrhea

"and make your champane bubble" -- when its projectile vomiting

"If you sqeeze me, I'll pop." -- yada, yada

"If you look at me, you'll pop." -- always flush the toilet quickly

"Can you guess the riddle?" -- don't bother getting up, I'm closer [fish]

Corn "I don't remember eating corn!" Chex

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Turban Man
I'll Be Home for After Christmas Sales


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Chuck Norris

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I am so smart! I am so smart! S-M-R-T,

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Amigone201
Happy Holly Days


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If it's "Time," what is it with the "If you look at me, you'll pop" part. It doesn't make champagne bubble; with time, champagne loses it's bubbles.

I checked on another message board first, where people were slowly coming around to the "I don't know" answer, figuring that that's how 86% of kindergarteners would respond, but Harvard graduates wouldn't. Of course, I think we're all thinking the same thing, that the statistic is another one of those made-up taglines that doesn't reflect any type of reality.

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Richard W
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


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quote:
Originally posted by Amigone201:
If it's "Time," what is it with the "If you look at me, you'll pop" part. It doesn't make champagne bubble; with time, champagne loses it's bubbles.

Champagne needs time to ferment to be bubbly in the first place - it only loses its bubbles once you open the bottle. No idea about the "pop" part though.
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Squishy0405
Wii Wiish You A Merry Chriistmas


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The anwser is OBVIOUSLY "click here" and you go and automatically repost the bulletin w/o knowing and then get your keystrokes logged & your account hacked in to! Dont forget to "click here" to see this WILD video or this sign trick too! I forget all the silly titles those things have... It sounded so much better earlier...I should have posted my thoughts then [lol]

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"Fate is like a strange, unpopular resturant, filled with odd waiters who bring you things you never ask for and don't always like."-Lemony Snicket

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Lizzy
I Saw Three Shipments


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I tried to google this one. A lot of people who found the "Time" poem simply cite it as a "children's poem." But I can't find out who wrote it. Any one have such luck?

ETA: Some people on other forums are going as far to say that this poem was actually made up just to "answer" this riddle.

I think it's more likely that the riddle was made from the poem, since the poem doesn't reference the "if you look at me, you'll pop" part. Maybe that part was a riddle about "bubbles" and was just added on the end. That's what I'm thinking.

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"Do you see me now? I'm like a fireball . . . with these shoulder pads I have the strength to destroy villages, homes and crops. GEM SWEATER!"

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NeeCD
Happy Holly Days


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quote:
Originally posted by Stoneybridge Dinosaur:
The following bit is on the end of some versions of the riddle:

97% of Harvard graduates can not figure this riddle out, but 84% of kindergarten students were able to figure this out in 6 minutes or less.

So judging from that, the people who have been saying that the answer is "no" are probably correct.

I've always seen this tacked onto the "nothing" riddle that Squishy mentioned. Maybe someone just borrowed it to make themself feel better about not getting it.

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I wondered why the Frisbee was getting bigger, then it hit me.
What does "Bookachow", "YOMANK!" and other lingo mean?

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mairzydotes
I'm Dreaming of a White Sale


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"if you look at me, you'll pop"

I thought perhaps that referred to looking at a clock...

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I used to think the brain was the most fascinating part of the body. Then I realized, look what's telling me that. -Emo Philips

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