Here is a version of the problem as stated in "Mathematics for Elementary Teachers," by Musser and Burger [an excellent source of interesting problems, by the way]:
"Three business women traveling together stopped at a motel to get a room for the night. They were charged $30 for the room and agreed to split the cost equally. The manager later realized that he had overcharged them by $5. He gave the refund to his son to deliver to the women. This smart son, realizing it would be difficult to split $5 equally, gave the women $3 and kept $2 for himself. Thus it cost each woman $9 for the room. Therefore, they spent $27 for the room plus the $2 'tip.' What happened to the other dollar?"
Those of us going to the Boston meetings would love to find this cheap motel!!
Ron Ward/Western Washington U/Bellingham, WA 98225 email@example.com
On Mon, 13 Mar 1995 DMcelwain@aol.com wrote:
> Hi, > > I am looking for The Missing Dollar Problem. I have a group of kids that > will find this one "interesting". I have searched high and low around this > house, and the problem is no where to be found. I am hoping that someone on > list will have it and post it. > > I am not sure exactly how it goes, but The Missing Dollar Problem is > unsolvable. It starts out describing a man who is paying his hotel bill. He > has $30 and the bill is $27. He tips the bellboy, and somehow gets some > change. When it is all done, he is short a dollar. > > Does anyone have a copy of the problem? > > > Thanks!!!!!! Diane McElwain >