Question:

Two people are talking long distance on the phone; one is physically in an East Coast state of the United States, the other is in a West Coast state of the United States. That is, the East Coast state borders the Atlantic Ocean; the West Coast state borders the Pacific Ocean. The first person asks the other, “What time is it?” When he hears the answer, he says, “That’s funny. I’m only one hour earlier than you.” How is that possible?

.

.

C

A

P

T

A

I

N

I

N

T

E

R

V

I

E

W

.

.

Solution: As far as I can tell, there’s only one reasonable solution to this puzzle. One of the people is in eastern Oregon (a West Coast state that borders the Pacific, yet whose eastern portion is in Mountain Time). The other per-son is in western Florida (an East Coast state that borders the Atlantic, yet whose western portion is in Central Time). The difference between Mountain and Central Time is one hour.

Answer: One person is in eastern Oregon; the other is in western Florida.

Extra credit: The puzzle can be made even more challenging by making the time for each person the same. This is possible if it happens to be at the exact moment when daylight savings changes at 2:00 a.m.