Trapped Without Options

This is a quiz1 of moderate to high difficulty.

There was a farmer who owed a capitalist half-a-million dollars for several years. One day while shopping with his 15 year-old daughter, the farmer bumped into the capitalist by accident.

"Got you!" The capitalist shouted at the farmer as he was trying to turn away. "Hi, how are you doing?" The farmer greeted. "Not too well without your repayment." The capitalist complained. "Now when are you going to repay the money? I have been looking for you. You seem to enjoy moving around."

"Oh, I'm so sorry. I need another three months. Please, give me some more time."

Gazing at the farmer's daughter, the capitalist said, "OK, I tell you what." Bending down to pick up a piece of white stone and a piece of black stone in the road, said, "If you fetch the white stone in the bag, you owe me nothing and you are free to go. But if you get the black one, your daughter will have to work for me for three years for nothing except food and accommodation." The farmer, left with no option, agreed to gamble.

"No, father. He puts two black stones in the bag!" The farmer's daughter whispered in his ear.

You're trapped without options. What do you do now?

If you think you know how to escape from the trap, tell me at


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Trapped Without Options

1 Modified from a story in DeBono, E. (1967). New Think: The Use of Lateral Thinking in the Generation of New Ideas. New York: Basic Books.

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