The following questions are provided by the folks at American Mensa, the High IQ Society. Without seeking the assistance of fellow passengers, can you provide the answers? If you find that you do need some help, the answers are below.

By Dr. Abbie F. Salny

1. In a contest to guess the number of beach balls in a window display, Ann guessed 25, Billy guessed 29, Charlie guessed 30, Dave guessed 31, and Evie guessed 32. One person was two off, two were one off, one was five off, and one was correct. How many beach balls were there?

2. Some letters have been removed from the following names of birds. Fill in the missing letters to find each bird.
C _ N _ _ Y
_ O _ D _ _
T _ _ _ _ H
M _ G _ _ _

3. Fill in the blanks below to complete three words that contain the letter string NOV.

N O V _ _ _ _ (a new thing or idea)
N O V _ _ _ (a series of prayers)
_ _ _ _ N O V _ (a famous man about town)

4. What would you call a research facility that is located on a tropical island?
_ _ _ _ _ _ _

5. The poem below can be completed by finishing each couplet with words that sound the same but have different meanings.
“Alas,” she said, “I hurt my __________.
It’s taking much too long to __________.

It’s given me a lot of __________.
I have to sit by my window __________.

I hope I’ll soon be feeling __________.
And back to cooking my usual __________.”

6. Find the five-digit number in which the first digit is one less than the second, the second is two less than the third, the third is two less than the fourth, and the fourth is two less than the fifth. The sum of the second and third digits equals the fourth. The sum of the second and fourth digits equals the last. The sum of all of the digits is 21.

7. Unscramble the letters in each pie segment below, then find the missing letter that completes each word. (The missing letter, indicated by the question mark, is the same for each word.)

8. Betsy was having guests for her birthday. She bought 42 party favors. Half were snappers, one-sixth were costume jewelry, one-seventh were joke items, and the rest were miniature cakes. How many were cakes?

9. Fill in each blank below with a word that has the same meaning as the words on either side.

Carrying case for money _____ to pucker up
Mode of transportation __________ to coach
Funeral plot __________ serious

Bonus Question: Although most moons are named from classical mythology, from what source are the major moons of Uranus named?


1. 30
2. Canary, condor, thrush, magpie
3. Novelty, novena, Casanova
4. Bali lab
5. Heel, heal; pain, pane; fair, fare
6. 12,468
7. Amaze, zealous, energize, azure
8. 8 (42/2=21; 42/6 =7; 42/7=6; 21+7+6=34, leaving 8)
9. Purse, train, grave
Bonus Question: Shakespeare