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This is a question The B3TA Detective Agency

Universalpsykopath tugs our coat and says: Tell us about your feats of deduction and the little mysteries you've solved. Alternatively, tell us about the simple, everyday things that mystified you for far too long.

(, Thu 13 Oct 2011, 12:52)
Pages: Popular, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1

This question is now closed.

Bidets
How is it possible to use them without either, flooding the place and soaking your clothes making it look like you've pissed yourself, or spraying shit all around the place. Ours got used once a year to defrost the Christmas turkey.
(, Sun 16 Oct 2011, 21:12, 2 replies)
The tramp in my living room.
I've just come home to find an unsupervised tramp in my living room. If you're from Bognor, you'll know him as the guy that plays the penny-whistle and argues with himself in russian, despite being english. Upon me questioning what the fuck he's doing here, he said: "You must be Sunray18, i've been old it's ok to charge my PSP in here."

No ending yet, i'm still bewildered!
(, Sun 16 Oct 2011, 20:26, 4 replies)
as was my job in fixing issues with newly produced cars
the odd one would produce bad behaviour that would baffle, perplex and mystify the rectification electricians and the call would come for someone from Engineering to come down and sort out the problem for which the sparky was not getting adequately paid for all that shit.

Cue one whose automatic gearbox would fail to calibrate and clear diagnostic fault codes which prevented the vehicle being moved on and sold and the guys had tried everything- new gearbox, new control unit, new wiring loom, new reprogramming of the module- all failed. No shorts on the wiring, no open circuits, no nothing. Days went by and the production supervisor got very shirty with us for not fixing this car that a customer had paid for and was expecting to be delivered to his dealership.

Then after exhausting all possibilities the maufacturing engineering guy went to get in and select neutral to move the car, putting the hazard flashers on as standard procedure and with his foot on the brake with the ignition in.

Now as anyone who has driven along behind a dodgy old Ford Sierra will recognise, sometimes you get this effect where the indicators blink on and the brake/tail lights go dim at the same time time. Well, there's a good reason for that and it's to do with bad (corroded) earthing. This brand new car was doing that very same thing and so we went back to the wiring diagrams.

Then within 5 minutes we pulled back the trim and found an earth eyelet not connected- the same earth eyelet which should have been bolted down to an earth stud providing an electrical circuit return to four or five separate ground wires, one of which was the transmission control module and the others were the rear right lamp cluster.

Turns out that with the key on the transmission module was only operating because, with no earth path the electrical feed was now earthing backwards through the brake lamp bulb into its control module input, so every time you put your foot on the brake the transmission module had no grounding and turned off. No short, no open circuit to earth (although not a very good one) and £1000s of pounds of labour and parts later... finally fucking cracked it! Now to find out how they fucked up the DC Tooling which is supposed to ensure that these kinds of mistakes can never EVER happen- so they say.
(, Sun 16 Oct 2011, 20:22, 2 replies)
Computer woes
My dad was having problems with his computer - it would just switch off, apparently at random. I took a look at it, but couldn't see anything wrong. He took it back to the shop but they couldn't find a fault, and couldn't reproduce the problem either.

One day he said, "It always seems to happen when I do this," and turned in his chair to take something out of the desk drawer. As he turned the arm of the chair poked the computer off switch.
(, Sun 16 Oct 2011, 15:39, 1 reply)
Mystery of the psychic dog (ok urban legend then)
It's common practice in England to ring a telephone by signaling extra voltage across one side of the two wire circuit and ground (earth in England). When the subscriber answers the phone, it switches to the two wire circuit for the conversation. This method allows two parties on the same line to be signalled without disturbing each other.

Anyway, an elderly lady with several pets called to say that her telephone failed to ring when her friends called; and that on the few occasions when it did ring her dog always barked first. The telephone repairman proceeded to the scene, curious to see this psychic dog.

He climbed a nearby telephone pole, hooked in his test set, and dialed the subscriber's house. The phone didn't ring. He tried again. The dog barked loudly, followed by a ringing telephone.

Climbing down from the pole, the telephone repairman found:
1. A dog was tied to the telephone system's ground post via an iron
chain and collar.
2. The dog was receiving a 90 volt signalling current.
3. After several such jolts, the dog would start barking and urinating on the ground.
4. The wet ground now completed the circuit and the phone would ring.

Which shows you that some problems can be fixed by just pissing on them.
(, Sun 16 Oct 2011, 15:15, 4 replies)
Ducks can't look up

(, Sun 16 Oct 2011, 15:11, 2 replies)
Stolen Nova
Some peas must be roasted:
b3ta.com/questions/cars/post705367
(, Sun 16 Oct 2011, 14:36, Reply)
How do...
people know it's a duck pond if there are no ducks in it?
(, Sun 16 Oct 2011, 13:46, 4 replies)
Running Man
My school was right at the end of the longest road in the town - closing in on a couple of miles. Right at the other end of the road was the railway station.

Every morning, as I looked out the window of the car on the way in, I saw the same man running at full pelt towards the railway station. His face was puffed and blowzy; his hair flickered in grey streamers in the wind; his shirt wrenched itself more and more from the confines of his belt with every passing step; and his briefcase swung wildly as though he were trying to fight off Hunter S. Thompson's hordes of invisible bats. Yet every day, there he was, wheezing at the injustice of mornings and aching for the moment when he could collapse on the train and sweat on his fellow commuters.

What I never figured out was why he didn't just set his alarm clock that little bit earlier. Maybe that morning race was the only moment of his life when he genuinely felt alive. Maybe he was a muppet.
(, Sun 16 Oct 2011, 11:40, 5 replies)
w to the t to the f?
Figuring out whats wrong with electrical systems is my job.. Sometimes tough, sometimes easy... But the all time winner was when I worked as a lowly sparky.. A house in wandsworth had a fuseboard protected by an rcd... Which tripped off at random times in the day and night.. Whole system tested to buggery and back- no fault found. Pulling my hair out after two days of fucking around.. The phone rang. The client ignored her phone as she was too busy doubting my skills and qualifications.. The answer phone kicked in and 'pop' off goes the rcd. Aaah.. Thinks me... Lets try that again.. I phone the house.. 'pop'! I then test the answer phone.. Works fine until the machine clicks on and produces a neutral to earth fault. Turns out she got nuisance phone calls during the day whilst she was at work and came home to no power or lights. There are no words to describe what a bundle of cuntery that was.
(, Sun 16 Oct 2011, 11:07, 2 replies)
Detective Get Your Own Shit Back.
Paying the kids who hung round the Maroubra streets day and night to tell me where my stolen motorbike ended up - scored it back only with ignition damage and $20 between the kiddlywinks.

When some poo muncher in Canberra stole my camera to inject it into his arm, I interrupted the fucker trying to sell it at a secondhand shop when I just happened to call said shop at the same time to look out for it. Shop called police, he was arrested and later found to have had $40,000 worth of the hot stuff after a robbery spree - scored it back with completed film roll still in it. Wanker.
(, Sun 16 Oct 2011, 8:14, 12 replies)
The Great Architect's answer to crap gadgets.
Was Matthew Broderick.

I just got it.
(, Sun 16 Oct 2011, 6:54, 1 reply)
Maybe someone can finally tell me
where are teh upload coadz.
(, Sun 16 Oct 2011, 6:49, 1 reply)
i've worked out there are three ways you can miss your train...
Missing trains fascinates me. If I’m on the train sitting waiting for it to trundle off and a group of commuters miss it, if it’s in a busy station there is a very visible and collective reaction of ‘awfirfucksake’ quickly followed by ‘fine, so it’s a ten minute wait, see if I care’. However a lone traveler at a quiet outlying station missing a train becomes a tragedy of epic proportions. Maybe its because there’s usually a much longer wait for the next train, or maybe if your on your own its suddenly ‘your train’ the only hope. One of my favorite Fast Show skits showed a family desperately battering along in holiday attire dragging bags and cases –nothing was ever explained, no resolution was offered, nor required. As much as I could identify with their plight I was also happy to mock.

Aside from the schadenfreude (oh come on – you could be the nicest person alive but there is a certain smug pleasure in sitting on the very train some sad tardy schmuck has just missed. It’s the same as seeing someone in a suit soaked by a lorry rampaging through a puddle).

I used to commute from a wee rural station in Lanark to Glasgow. I’m always late. Maybe not so much late but I tend to cut it finer and finer until finally the luck runs out. There’s another small pleasure – strolling onto a train just as the doors start beeping. “Fuck yeah I’m cool” Although to be honest it was more often a very undignified dash where only the victory steps were strolled. Adults shouldn’t run. Not unless there are trophies involved. Particularly if you are in any way overweight or out of shape or are carrying a bag. You just look like a tit.

Over time I noticed there are three basic types of missed train melodramas.

1. Injustice: “How could this happen?” (The doors are sealed and its pulling away) “Oh no it can’t be true – all is lost” coupled with a look of tragic bewilderment.

2. Denial: “NO! You utter bastard – you DEFINITELY saw me and deliberately left ahead of schedule.” Minor tantrum ensues on platform. Letters of complaint are drafted.

3. Blame: “Oh well fucking done! You knew what time you had to be here and you fucked it up. Can’t even get on a bloody train on time. Well fucking thank you”.

Which brings me to my point. One day I dashed up the escalators to the low level trains at Argyle Street in Glasgow – is it just me or is it odd you descend one escalator then have to go back up another escalator to get to the platform?

I heard the doors beeping as I got to the top of the escalator. There was a throng of Denials and a few Blamers in front of me. The doors had started to close. The Injustice brigade had already started looking to each other for some sense to it all. A few had already begun tying yellow ribbons around the benches.

Not today I thought! I pushed through the fallen and bewildered and grabbed the closing doors. They didn’t stop closing.

Fuck.

Determined, I hopped onto the doorstep and for some reason began to Samson style, heave the doors apart. Suddenly I was a superhero tearing open an impregnable vault – steel plate ripping apart like wet paper. The smug brigade on the train mere inches from my face looked at me through the door windows wryly.

“Daft fucker’s missed his train”

But then a marvelous thing – the doors gave up. Folded, or more so unfolded. As I casually stepped into the newly conquered carriage, the doors snapped shut behind, leaving the bewildered and the damned on the platform – excluded and bereft.

In true Glasgow style a bloke casually turned to me and said:

“So how do you get aff mate – through the roof?”

That day I was (slightly) ahead!
(, Sun 16 Oct 2011, 1:31, 23 replies)
think i've got life the universe and everything sussed here...
re: our invisible friend. So, no one knows what happens when we snuff it. The overwhelming likelihood is not very much. Ever been unconscious?

But no – when offered an incomprehensible, inconceivable jumble of superstitions, fairy tales and bogeyman stories rewritten recycled and Chinese whispered down the ages by control freaks and charlatans - you are CERTAIN beyond all doubt that despite all the vast wonder of all existence there is a creator, who (while having a universe to run) is obsessed with your every move thought and action. Oh and you can wish for stuff too.

An all powerful intangible invisible friend and protector – sounds pretty cool. You must be immune to all illness, earthquakes and injury then. No?

Our essential natural urges are shameful and evil?

Your creator is jealous, intolerant, violent, vindictive, spiteful, pernicious and vengeful – but he loves you?

I should terrify my tiny innocent child with assurances this invisible character is waiting in the shadows to punish him for questioning any of this whilst conversely insisting he only deals in truth and that ghosts and goblins are just camp fire tales?

You insist you require no proof for this but continually strive to find bolt-on bits and bobs of science that support your crackpot ideas - the same science that you continually deny.

If my crackpot jumble of superstitions varies even slightly from yours we should devote all our energies to annihilation in a manner that contradicts the few worthwhile parts of your crazy code of divine conduct?

We have the technology to split the atom and unravel DNA but your preference is to split humanity into one half who believe dinosaurs were a prank and another half who believe women should be bundled up and passed around like parcels by men who think it’s a splendid idea to chop off rather crucial bits of anatomy.

We see ourselves as an advanced civilisation yet it was twenty or so years after landing a man on the moon before we realised wheels on a suitcase might be helpful.

Doesn’t bode well does it?
(, Sun 16 Oct 2011, 1:26, 22 replies)
Car-engine pearoast
A car near mine in a car park started, then abruptly stopped. The young driver got out and scratched his head.

I strolled over and told him 'One of your battery connections has jumped off the battery. You need to get it back on.'

He looked at me as if I was mad but when he opened the bonnet, there was the connection, waving freely like the erection of an adulterer caught in flagrante making his escape.

I knew that click/dead sound of old from years of owning diesel vans. The engine vibrations shake the battery connections off. My kids used to be sent to the shop to buy a KitKat so I could wrap the foil round the connection to tighten it.

Impressed a boyfriend with this knowledge too. Reader, he married me.
(, Sun 16 Oct 2011, 1:03, 6 replies)
Stayed at Skegness Butlins years ago, self-catering. On arrival I noticed several dirty forks lying on the floor between the cooker and the wall.
This puzzled me until I cooked a meal there. I stirred the beans or whatever with a fork and then set it down on top of the cooker, as I would at home.

A minute or two later I picked it up again. Yow! Red-hot! My shocked fingers jerked and released it, flinging it - yes, down the side of the cooker, with all the others.

Different cooker. Got hot on top, unlike mine at home. Fork-mystery solved.
(, Sun 16 Oct 2011, 0:53, 3 replies)
I had to see the movie a few times & then wait about 4 years before anything
that even remotely made any sense came along on a bbs.
Who shot Nice Guy Eddie?
Never really liked Tarantino tho.
(, Sun 16 Oct 2011, 0:41, Reply)
pub quiz question deductioning
The question was along the lines of "who's credited with inventing soft-scoop icecream in the 50's?"

I thought, as it's a quiz, it's probably someone famous. Who's a famous chemist? Margret Thatcher was a Chemist (this particular bit of trivia had been laying dormant in my brain for years) - I wonder if it's her.

It was!
(, Sun 16 Oct 2011, 0:19, 1 reply)
why the fuck
did people willingly hang around with jessica fletcher?
(, Sat 15 Oct 2011, 23:30, 6 replies)

I have been planning to write a mystery novel for years now.

Or have I...
(, Sat 15 Oct 2011, 21:58, 4 replies)
I really don't get....
The new automatic hand wash dispensers. Every time the advert comes on TV I end up arguing with my mother as she can't understand how I think they are a waste of time and money.
You are going to wash your hands and need soap, if you are pushing the dispenser with your hand, any bacteria that is transferred will be washed off while soaping your hands!
What about those people who soap first, then turn the tap on? What about the germs on the tap????

Baffles me why people think this product is great and they must have it in their lives!!!!
(, Sat 15 Oct 2011, 21:42, 13 replies)
This continues to baffle me
Why can't people just get on with each other? At the basic level, why are folks killing each other in the name of faith, or because of divergent ideas on sexuality or even just ethnic origin. People confuse the fuck out of me, it is not hard, you just have to be just be nice to each other!

Racists, sexists, homophobes, religious intolerant bigots, they confound me. Ok, so I am a naive idiot, tear me a new one.
(, Sat 15 Oct 2011, 20:22, 20 replies)
I solved one of the greatest mysteries of all time a few years ago.
Where lost socks go.
That's right. Down the back of the radiator is where they go. I found hundreds of them. I even found some belonging to the person who lived there before me.
(, Sat 15 Oct 2011, 20:16, 2 replies)
just catching up...
and reading this..
b3ta.com/questions/wearedetective/post1392042#answers-post-1392431
and I do have an additional point of question..

Why is the pig industry in Saudi Arabia quite as large as it is? My friendly Muslim vet who had worked in the said industry just told me "Because they eat a lot of pork and bacon". At that point, it all just fell apart for me and nothing makes sense any more.
It makes less sense than putting a cat in a wheelie bin.
(, Sat 15 Oct 2011, 19:55, 9 replies)
A friend just told me this story last night.
Over here on the weekends National Public Radio broadcasts "Car Talk" and "Prairie Home Companion" on Saturdays and replay them on Sundays for those who missed it. If you've never heard either of these shows, go do a little Google searching for recordings. They're hilarious.

So Richard and his girlfriend were riding together in his car on a trip somewhere, and they switched on NPR in time to catch Car Talk. Like me, Richard is good with machinery and knows a bit about cars, so he likes listening and trying to guess the problem. Pamela was a career diplomat and had no knowledge of machinery, but she enjoyed listening to the Magliozzi brothers joking around.

One caller described his problem in a very long and detailed story. As he finished the tale Pamela announced to Richard, "It's the tie rod ends. They need to be replaced."

Richard was surprised that she had ventured an opinion, and was dumbfounded when Tom and Ray agreed with her. "How the hell did you know that?"

"It's Sunday, Richard..."
(, Sat 15 Oct 2011, 19:51, 4 replies)
Of cabbages and cars
You are the contestant on a game show.
The host shows you 3 doors.
Behind two of the doors is a cabbage. Behind one of them is a car.
The host asks you to select a door.
The host opens a DIFFERENT door to the one you chose, revealing a cabbage.
The host asks you if you want to pick a different door, or stick with the one you have.

Presuming you want a car, should you change or stick?
(, Sat 15 Oct 2011, 18:24, 17 replies)
I knew someone who lived next to a Buddhist monastery
and my friend told me "yeah, they're always playing Nirvana."

I thought that they must play loud music in order to clear their minds.

Years later I was driving past the same place and said "apparently the monks were always listening to Nirvana...oh."
(, Sat 15 Oct 2011, 16:38, Reply)
Suddenly...
Our president's an idiot.
(, Sat 15 Oct 2011, 16:17, 1 reply)
We created a mystery which the people involved may never solve
Driving my cousin home late one Friday night after he had done some some plastering work on my house we passed by a group of boys walking in to town, just as we drove past our attention was brought to them by one of them dancing like a tit, with his pals laughing, unbeknownst to him as he was doing this his wallet fell out his back pocket.

My cousin suggested we turn around at the next roundabout and go back and see what was in the wallet.

By the time we got turned round the boys were nowhere to be seen and the area was deserted, after some searching we found the wallet which contained just 20 pounds, cards and a ticket to a gig that night. We decided to find the boys and give the wallet back, laughing at how he would be surprised to be approached and handed his own wallet.

But then, somehow, a much more funny idea came about.

First we drove around until we spotted them.

Then, knowing they were heading in to town and that the area was quiet and industrial, we drove about a quarter of a mile ahead, checking no one else was around.

We then placed the wallet on the pavement so it would be in their path once they reached the spot.

We then hid and watched them approach, say 'hey, that's someone's wallet over there!' , walk up to it, pick it up excitedly, open it looking for riches, and inexplicably discover it was theirs.

The absolute confusion and surprise was hilarious to watch, I like to think they still talk about how one of their wallets somehow jumped ahead of them and come up with crazy scenarios to try to explain it.

We then drove on crying with laughter, I still think it was one of the best and most simple pranks we have ever pulled off.
(, Sat 15 Oct 2011, 15:28, 5 replies)

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