It’s about 2 years and 3 months since I was a 2x3x3x3-year-old, and tomorrow my little brother also bids farewell to that age, as he then turns 55–but a very youthful one! Our phone conversations cover lots of topics of mutual interest, including our love of music. I will now have frequent fresh musical news to share, thanks to my new job as the Mathematics teacher for the primary, middle and high school students in Musica Mundi School, a stunningly beautiful music school in Waterloo.
BRAINTEASER FOR MY LITTLE BROTHER’S BIRTHDAY TOMORROW!
Can you discover a nice mathematical connection between the number 551 and the numbers in tomorrow’s date 9.9.18?
LOVE OF MUSIC
The photo just above shows me in Brussels beside the Jacques Brel statue, which was sculpted by artist Tom Frantzen.
By the way, since mathematicians have to balance their equations well, it’s fitting that my current favourite music soundtracks (by Harry Gregson-Williams) are from The Equalizer and its sequel!
MUSICA MUNDI SCHOOL WORD PUZZLE
Start with the lucky 21 letters in
MUSICA MUNDI SCHOOL TEAM
Cross out the following letters…
SUMS I AM MIND U
Use all the left-over letters to make a delicious nine-letter word!
THANK YOU FOR TEACHING ME CHESS!
Long ago, my little brother was the one who kindly taught me the rules of chess. He could certainly crack the following puzzle: discover how White, to move, can force a quick win from the given position.
SOLUTIONS TO PUZZLES
You may well have thought of perfectly good solutions which differ from mine, but here is what I had in mind…
2x3x3x551=9918 for the numbers brainteaser.
(Incidentally, though 551 may plausibly look like a prime number, it’s actually composite: 551=19×29.)
In the word puzzle, the nine left-over letters rearrange to make CHOCOLATE!
In the chess puzzle,
- Qxf8+! Kxf8 2. Rxf7+ Kg8 3. Rf8+ Kg7 4. R2f7# is a neat checkmate.
Wherever you are, I wish you a very happy weekend now.