Bryce Brain Teaser

In grade school, I attended a program called, “MGM” which stood for “Mentally Gifted Minors.” Someone eventually changed the name — one would assume because “MGM” was famously taken, but maybe just because labeling one group of kids as Mentally Gifted meant saying that all the other kids were not.

(And now, as I consider it, I’m thankful that my participation in MGM didn’t get me punched more often during recess.)

At the appointed time, we were dismissed from class and dispatched to the library, where we… did stuff.** All I remember are the Brain Teasers. We’d start with riddles, and I think sometimes we were rewarded with more riddles.

Here’s why I keep revisiting these memories this week:

First, I had a moment at work this week that made me remember a similar situation: that we were usually dismissed from class for MGM during Math – at which I excelled – and then by Junior High School Pre-Algebra class I discovered I’d missed a lot of basics, and I most definitely never excelled at math again. Ironic, huh?

Second, the name thing. They changed it from “MGM” to “G&T,” which stood for “Gifted & Talented.” Why are you laughing? Does “G&T” mean something else to you?

Finally, I had a very long day today, and then I came home and started this post. I went searching for certain photos, but the ones that caught my attention were these two:

The more I stare at them, all I can think is, “Why did we love those Brain Teasers so much?”

For the record, I took both of these photos (Natural Bridge in Bryce Canyon) within seconds of each other. Clearly, I moved a few feet to my left for the second photo, and that explains why the closer tree is missing, but not the pine tree below the notch. It looks digitally removed or something (it wasn’t). The angle of everything else is only slightly changed; not enough to make the tree completely disappear.

Can you solve this optical illusion? Please do. My brain hurts. I need some help, G&T!

** Bonus Points if you can remind me what else happened at MGM? Did we really only sit around a table and answer riddles? OH! I remember doing experiments with prisms. Points for me!

2 thoughts on “Bryce Brain Teaser

  1. I wasn’t selected for mgm, but on rare, thrilling occasions I was called on to get the tiny milk cartons for all that paid. Going to the empty cafeteria and stepping behind the scenes was a look into a forbidden world! I know this comment is off topic, but your post made me think of this memory.


    • I had a job in the cafeteria monitoring the trash (making sure nobody threw out their tray, or their unopened tiny milk carton). My pay was a free lunch and all the tiny milks I could drink. Turns out, I can drink a LOT of tiny milk.


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