When I was in the US, I heard horror stories about a scenario that posed a problem so complex that it was considered unsolvable. Every possible solution was considered to yield an undesirable outcome. This scenario was the one where a very overweight woman asks her man, "Do these pants make me look fat?"
Today I revisited this problem and I believe I have finally come up with an elegant solution. I'll share it after going through my previous iterations at a solution. It took so many years of thought to arrive at it.
When I first heard about this problem as a teenager, the best answer I could come up with was this:
This was at least an honest answer in my mind (I don't place value in white lies). Unfortunately, using this solution would likely upset the girl, but at least we did not use deception.
A Heroic Solution
I thought about this problem more for some following years and arrived at a few iterations of minor improvements. After some trial and error, I arrived at what I thought was the best solution possible because I ceased to find improvements upon it for many years after. The solution was this:
I believe the pants to be innocent.
This solution is not only honest but it helps prevent the pants from being wrongly accused of crimes it did not commit, only to end up in the rubbish bin for something it did not do.
Unfortunately, I think there was still a good probability of upsetting the girl, but at least we could protect the innocent pants in this scenario. This is a very heroic and just solution that helps to save pants across the world. Nevertheless, I finally found something even better.
The Ultimate Solution
Just today, I revisited this problem after so many years of thinking the above solution was as good as it gets. I believe using this site with its endless barrage of extremely complex and thought-provoking questions improved my analytical skills tremendously because today I had a "eureka" moment; I saw this problem with the crystal clarity of a kind I never saw before.
I believe my answer is revolutionary and it's so simple and so elegant. Here is the ultimate solution to this complex problem, formerly considered unsolvable by so many:
Now people might ask, "Wait a minute? Isn't that just a white lie?" It's not! That's the brilliance of this solution. The girl did not ask, "Do I look fat in these pants?" Instead, she asked, "Do these pants make me look fat?"
No [the pants don't make you look fat, you look fat in everything. Don't say this part in the brackets]
We're being perfectly honest here! There are no white lies involved! It's basically just an extension of the "I believe the pants to be innocent" solution, only this solution not only defends the innocence of the pants but I believe it has a very low probability of actually upsetting the girl.
It's so obvious and simple but it eluded me for all these years as it seems to have eluded all the others who thought this question was a trap. It's not a trap. Just use the answer above and you should be fine (remember not to say the part in the brackets).
Discoveries Need to Be Shared
Anyway, I'm so excited about this discovery and I wanted to share it with you guys as soon as possible!