Many years ago, a man a third of the way though his life gave me a ring. It wasn't anything grand at first, but he was proud to have given me that ring.

Little did he know, I am an immortal, or at least I would live a far longer life than he did. Over many years, even more men (and women and even children) have given me rings. Some have passed, and some are still here.

Eventually, everyone who give me a ring will leave. It's a painful life to live. And no matter how fancy or loud the rings they give me are, many who see me will still prefer a ring similar to the one that first man gave me.

How about you? Have you given me your ring?

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    $\begingroup$ Wow, I thought this was irrelevant at first. $\endgroup$
    – user88
    Oct 2, 2015 at 4:15

2 Answers 2


You are

A telephone.

Invented (and first rung) by Alexander Graham Bell about a third of the way into his life, the phone has outlived Bell by almost a century and shows no sign of becoming obsolete any time soon.

Men, women and children ring a telephone when they want to speak to someone. Many people who have rung a telephone have since died, and everyone who rings a telephone will eventually hang up and leave the call.

Modern phones (especially cellphones) have fancy rings, but quite a few people (myself included) like their phone to ring as if it had actual bells on it, similar to the original phones.

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    $\begingroup$ ninja'd. I'm assuming you're finishing the explanation (different phones give different rings, no one stays on the phone forever etc...) - a lot of people prefer normal traditional ring tones to annoying new fancy cellphone ring tones $\endgroup$ Oct 1, 2015 at 21:04
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    $\begingroup$ I can't give you a tick yet (too soon). You have mostly hit what I was after, although some of the interpretations of clues are not what I expected. The primary answer, however, is correct. $\endgroup$
    – tfitzger
    Oct 1, 2015 at 21:10
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    $\begingroup$ Yea I was, not sure if that's considered poor form or not. I tried to at least make sure that the first version had an adequate, if not complete, explanation $\endgroup$
    – Player One
    Oct 1, 2015 at 21:11
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    $\begingroup$ Since the line "I am an immortal", clearly, OP is a Nokia. $\endgroup$
    – corsiKa
    Oct 1, 2015 at 22:39
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    $\begingroup$ "The phone ... shows no sign of becoming obsolete any time soon." - Actually, phones have become obsolete many times! But they always get replaced by other things that are also called phones. (Just like Ethernet) $\endgroup$ Oct 2, 2015 at 1:35

You are:

a bathtub in a hotel. The first time someone takes a bath, not much of a ring is left. However, as time goes on, the ring gets better and better. :D (Most people prefer not to have a ring in the bathtub, so prefer a ring like the original!)


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