Beach Day by Rodger Bliss
May 2024

Slower Than Newt

Thrown forward as fast as a speeding train, nothing stops me nor slows me down, but I moved not one inch forward.


Thank you Crabman for another great submission!

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7 guesses to Slower Than Newt

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  • Sampreet

    Possible Solutions:
    1. Thrown forward from the front of a train that was moving backward at the same speed.
    2. You didn’t move “one inch”, but many inches.

  • Papa g

    A crab because they walk side ways don’t they?

  • craig

    Earth spins pretty quick even when you stand still.

  • brent

    I thought this might be gravitational field – travels at the speed of light, through anything, but doesn’t actually move.

  • Crabman

    Since its been a couple days, I’ll point out that the answer I provided is basically what Sampreet said for his #1 on June 5th.

    As an example, if a train is travelling at 20km/h due north, and you are standing at the back of the train and throw an object directly south at exactly 20km/h (relative to you and the train), an observer on the ground will watch it fall straight down. The 2 velocities cancel out to zero.

    For the physics pedants, I admit that Relativity tells us this isn’t the full story, but at the slow speeds we’re talking it agrees with what a person will observe.

  • Crabman

    Also “Newt” in the title is a reference to Isaac Newton. Newtonian mechanics tells us it drops straight down.

  • Sampreet, you are today’s winner!
    If an item is thrown from the back of a speeding train, at exactly the same speed as the train is moving, an observer standing still on the ground will witness the item drop straight down. It moved forward not one inch. Bonus: Newt in the title references Newtonian Mechanics, which in the proof for the solution at non-relativistic velocities.