I received this in a humor newsletter. I’ve seen several variations but I have yet to understand how this works mathematically. Does anyone know?

It’s probably best to try it before you read too much further (in case someone is able to explain it) because like magic tricks, they’re usually not nearly as impressive after you know how they work.

1. First, pick the number of times a week that you would like to have chocolate (more than once but less than 10)

2. Multiply this number by 2 (just to be bold)

3. Add 5

4. Multiply it by 50

5. If you have already had your birthday this year add 1756 .. If you haven’t, add 1755.

6. Now subtract the four digit year that you were born.

You should now have a three digit number.

The first digit of this was your original number (i.e., how many times you want to have chocolate each week).

The next two numbers are your age!

I decided to run the numbers and I can see that it ends up with 2006 (or 2005) plus the number you chose times 100. I still don’t understand what the times 2 and plus 5 do exactly and how someone was able to derive the equation.

# |
x2 |
+5 |
x50 |
+1756 |

2 | 4 | 9 | 450 | 2206 |

3 | 6 | 11 | 550 | 2306 |

4 | 8 | 13 | 650 | 2406 |

5 | 10 | 15 | 750 | 2506 |

6 | 12 | 17 | 850 | 2606 |

7 | 14 | 19 | 950 | 2706 |

8 | 16 | 21 | 1050 | 2806 |

9 | 18 | 23 | 1150 | 2906 |

I’m not sure how the equation works either, but I sure like chocolate :)

It’s so simple…

All the numbers are just to confuse you and make it seem magical. Obviously 2006 minus your birth year always equals your age, so they are just hiding that with bigger numbers.

The x2 and +5 make is so it’s always an odd number, but this really doesn’t matter. It’s the 1755 and 1756 that really do the real work. These are the numbers that are modified to ensure the final number will work out. 10 years ago when this was going around, they were 1745 and 1756.

Make sense?

So could you come up with another set of numbers that do the same thing (i.e. they show the number you chose at the beginning on the front?)

Could I?!? Nope. I’m analytical – not creative.

Just as I suspected ;)

i was born in 1980 what # i pick it won’t go to my age now it year 2007 and my age is 27 what ever # it came 2306 , 2406 – 1980 it still 26 years can u tell me what did i do wrong ?

In comment 2, jlow points out that the numbers change each year. You would need to use 1756 and 1757.

Let’s say you pick 2. 2 * 2 = 4, +5 = 9, *50 = 450, +1757 = 2207, -1980 = 227. You chose 2, so that’s the first number and the next two numbers are your age.