Weekend Genius Challengs #21: Ti Kwan Leap

With Leap Day coming up next Friday, I began to search my trivia mind for names of people that had been born on February 29. I recall a source saying Superman was born on that date, along with John Tesh. Oh, and "Froggy" from the Our Gang movie shorts. So I began to think about other unusual birthdates, and even examined my own. I realized that if I'd been born a week later, mine would be 4/5/67, which would've been cool because of the sequential numbers.

Thus was born this Weekend Genius Challenge. Find a famous person, living or dead, whose birthdate is numerically unusual. 5/5/55 would be an example (all fives), as would 2/4/68 (all even numbers) or 1/6/1666. I'll leave it to you to determine what makes the date unique. Post the person's name and birthdate it in the comments below, and we'll pick one of them at random to win a T-shirt of your choice from the mental_floss store. (Yes, we'll check to make sure the date is correct.) Why a random pick? I'm taking Leap Day off. Hey, it only comes around every four years!

If you're lucky, this Leap Day will be the last one you'll ever have to live with an incomplete wardrobe. Wouldn't you look great in one of these?

Gasp... Is This the End of the Weekend Genius Challenge?

It's been a struggle to come up with mental exercises that are difficult enough for the many, many brilliant folks who read mental_floss and visit It's difficult to develop puzzles that are (1) safe from Web searches, but (2) not impossible to solve. After seeing many difficult contests won in a matter of minutes, I'm taking this weekend off to reassess the Weekend Genius Challenge.

We get the most entries in creative-type challenges... having you write haikus using the two words from the ReCaptcha service, asking you to tell us where the "lost" hour went during Daylight Saving Time, and so forth. So we're considering going that route for future WGCs. What do you think? Ideas, suggestions, and comments are more than welcome. In fact, if you'll kindly take the time to chime in, we'll pick a random comment and send the responsible party the mental_floss T-shirt of his or her choice. Thanks in advance.

In the meantime, we'll continue to do Brain Games on a daily basis, with puzzles of varying description each weekday. And we'll have results for the last two WGCs in a day or two. Have a great weekend, everyone!

Weekend Genius Challenge #30: Unwritten Rules

We got SO many entries for last week's WGC that it may take us the rest of the weekend to sort through all the responses... but we'll choose a winner before Monday arrives. In the meantime, since you all seem to enjoy being creative, let's give away another T-shirt by unleashing Weekend Genius Challenge #30!

Many "unwritten rules" guide our planet. Here are a few I've jotted down over the years:

1. All really good architects must go by three names.

2. The number of leaves that end up in your yard in the fall has more to do with your neighbor's trees than your own.

3. During trip to a restaurant with someone else, when you ask for two orders of fries, both orders will be incredibly large and too much to eat. But the next time you go to that restaurant with someone else and ask for only a single order of fries -- thinking it will be enough to share -- the order will be incredibly small.

Your job is to fill us in on the "unwritten rules" that you've experienced in life. The mind behind the one we vote best will win a T-shirt of his or her choice from our online store. REALLY, REALLY IMPORTANT: To be absolutely clear, your entries should have nothing to do with identity, race, color, religion, sexual preference, political preference, physical or mental issues, or anything bordering that. In other words, don't direct them towards any person or group of people who might possibly take offense. So be smart. Play nice. Sit up straight. And tell your sister you love her.

Also, please remember that all comments will be moderated before they're released, so it may take a while for them to appear on the site. Enter as many times as you like, but please put each entry in a separate comment. Good luck!


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