Three surgeons and a clumsy cook go camping in the remote wilderness. The clumsy cook stumbles over the campfire as he is serving the surgeons, injuring himself and dumping hot stew on the hands of the surgeons.
The cook's injuries need surgical treatment. The surgeons' injuries are minor but open. It turns out they brought the equipment necessary for the cook's surgery with them, and they can use the campfire to sterilize the tools. But there are only two rubber gloves. Because of the different surgeons' skills, all three of the surgeons are needed to operate on the cook, in sequence.
How can this be done without any of them being exposed to the blood of any of the others?
There are only four glove surfaces as well as four people. Each surface therefore must be associated with only one person.
The first surgeon wears both gloves. The outer glove must then remain the outer (or only) glove each remaining time to keep that outer surface toward the patient.
The second surgeon then wears only that outer glove.
The third surgeon then turns the first surgeon's inner glove inside out and puts it inside the second surgeon's only glove (the original surgeon's outer glove), so that the surface reserved for the patient remains outside and the two surfaces contaminated by the previous two doctors are facing each other between the two gloves.
But how does each doctor perform surgery with only one hand?
Posted by Charlie
on 2003-07-21 03:04:15