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This puzzle consists of three riddles. For each riddle, give the solution and then, finally, the word that connects these solutions.

    .--.      .--.      .--.      .--.      .--.      .--.      .--.      .--.
  :::::.\::::::::.\::::::::.\::::::::.\::::::::.\::::::::.\::::::::.\::::::::.\
  ´      `--´      `--´      `--´      `--´      `--´      `--´      `--´      `


                        Take a look at my toe,
                            you could really say it's odd.
                        Hot or cold, you should know,
                            it's my temperament, not my blood.

             --<<O>>--<<O>>--<<O>>--<<O>>--<<O>>--<<O>>--<<O>>--<<O>>--

                        If you know me, I'm very deep
                            but not sweet to your taste.
                        With time or in a heartbeat,
                            I give life or lay waste.

             --<<O>>--<<O>>--<<O>>--<<O>>--<<O>>--<<O>>--<<O>>--<<O>>--

                        Though I have no head, have no hands,
                            everything I'll be shaking.
                        More than water or desert sands,
                            everything I'll be shaping.


    .--.      .--.      .--.      .--.      .--.      .--.      .--.      .--.
  :::::.\::::::::.\::::::::.\::::::::.\::::::::.\::::::::.\::::::::.\::::::::.\
  ´      `--´      `--´      `--´      `--´      `--´      `--´      `--´    
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  • $\begingroup$ Maybe some kind of hint could get it further? $\endgroup$ – oleslaw Oct 26 '16 at 9:37
  • $\begingroup$ @oleslaw Like I said in chat, at the moment I'm not sure this question deserves hints. I mean if I was asking in person, maybe, but having Internet search at your disposal, it makes it very dangerous to give a hint for 3 riddles. :P $\endgroup$ – Alenanno Oct 26 '16 at 10:53
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First riddle:

Thermometer(?): the "toe" of a traditional thermometer is an "odd" (not even) thing - as well as it is quite "odd" (unusual) because its not specifically a toe. By the look at it you can say if its cold or hot. My "blood" is mercury, and you can see the "temperament" - a clue to think of "temperature".

Second riddle:

Water: is deep, is not sweet, with time it gives life and in a heartbeat it may lay waste (tsunami)

Third riddle:

Wind: has no hands or head, causes stuff to shake, and corrode, so it shapes stuff more than water or sand.

As to the final answer:

Pressure (as Patrick suggested). Thermometer works by changes in pressure of mercury. Water at large depths has quite big pressure. Wind is caused by difference of pressure of the air.

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  • $\begingroup$ Good attempts! :D You're on the right track. Keep at it! $\endgroup$ – Alenanno Oct 8 '16 at 9:54
  • $\begingroup$ It seems to me that the connecting theme might be pressure, though saying that is a bit of a stretch since the second riddle doesn't relate much to it... thermometers work through thermal expansion which is essentially a change in the pressure of mercury, and wind works due to differences in pressure in the atmosphere. I can't explain the connection thoroughly for water though in the context of that riddle. Maybe in the metaphorical sense: i.e. the pressure to evolve or to survive catastrophe. $\endgroup$ – Patrick Roberts Oct 8 '16 at 19:44
  • $\begingroup$ @Patrick Roberts Actually the 2nd riddle says: "I'm very deep" - water at large depths has quite big pressure. $\endgroup$ – oleslaw Oct 9 '16 at 7:54
  • $\begingroup$ @PatrickRoberts The link could be a hurricane, water temperature rises, causing winds? $\endgroup$ – CDspace Oct 14 '16 at 21:11
  • $\begingroup$ What about "meteorology"? Assuming that your first three answers are correct, that would certainly fit. Temperature, rainfall, wind speed... all central parts of meteorology. Submitting as a comment as I don't think it's enough new information for me to take credit for. $\endgroup$ – Leafy Greens Oct 15 '16 at 20:26
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Annoyingly partial answer:

First riddle:

Don't know.

Second riddle:

This must be the sea or ocean. Very deep, check; not sweet but salty; life may well have begun in the sea or by its side, but tsunamis and the like can be devastating.

Third riddle:

This seems like it could describe either wind (which shakes trees etc. and is arguably responsible for more erosion than water or sand) or earth movements (earthquakes in the first half, plate tectonics in the second; both are kinda the same phenomenon).

Connecting theme:

Seems like it is going to be either waves (suggested by the decorative borders at top and bottom; oceans have them, and earthquakes are basically large-amplitude sound waves propagating through the earth) or classical elements (we have earth and water, so perhaps the first riddle leads to air or fire in some way I'm not yet seeing).

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  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Nice answer. The decorations for the riddles are just that, decorations. In other words, no related to the solution. I just like good presentations. But you're on the right track for the solutions. Keep working on it! $\endgroup$ – Alenanno Oct 8 '16 at 9:52
  • $\begingroup$ You've got something right, but you're missing important details that let you figure out the answer. :) $\endgroup$ – Alenanno Oct 15 '16 at 20:46
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Common theme:

classical elements. The missing one is AIR.

First riddle:

maybe FIRE? I'm not sure how the "toe" part works, but certainly you should know whether fire is hot or cold: it's hot by nature, not just its blood like warm-blooded or cold-blooded animals.

Second riddle:

WATER, specifically SEA: it's deep and salty; with time it can give life (whales, fish, seaweed, etc.), or in an instant it can lay waste (tsunamis).

Third riddle:

EARTH: it shakes in earthquakes and quite literally shapes the world, more so than water or sand, which can both be seen as fluids.

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  • $\begingroup$ This sounds very convincing, but what about that "toe"? :) I can't make this part clear enough... $\endgroup$ – oleslaw Oct 8 '16 at 10:32
  • $\begingroup$ (This seems to be essentially a subset of my answer...) $\endgroup$ – Gareth McCaughan Oct 8 '16 at 12:19
  • $\begingroup$ @Gareth Sorry, I didn't realise you'd mentioned classical elements too! I just looked at your solutions to the three riddles and thought I had enough new stuff (e.g. a solution to the first one, and an overall solution) to be worth posting a new answer. (I'd already been looking at the riddle, without being logged in, before any answers were posted here - I didn't just copy from yours.) $\endgroup$ – Rand al'Thor Oct 8 '16 at 12:30
  • $\begingroup$ It's OK -- no hard feelings or anything. I just thought it was amusing. Great minds think alike, etc., etc. $\endgroup$ – Gareth McCaughan Oct 8 '16 at 12:32
  • $\begingroup$ You've got something right, but you're missing important details that let you figure out the answer. :) $\endgroup$ – Alenanno Oct 15 '16 at 20:46
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First riddle:

Horse

Second Riddle:

Sea

Third riddle:

Wind

Connection:

I don't know (it may be racing since there is a horse named 'sea wind')

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  • $\begingroup$ Please can you explain why these solutions are correct, i.e. how they fit the lines of the riddles as stated in the question? Answers without explanation may be removed. $\endgroup$ – Rand al'Thor Oct 8 '16 at 13:42
  • $\begingroup$ Also, please use spoilers. :D $\endgroup$ – Alenanno Oct 8 '16 at 13:44
  • $\begingroup$ You've got something right, but you're missing important details that let you figure out the answer. :) You should come back! $\endgroup$ – Alenanno Oct 15 '16 at 20:46
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First riddle

Lava toes. They flow oddly and active ones can resemble a cut bleeding from skin

Second riddle

The sea. It's salty not sweet, and very deep. Water obviously is the key to all life. A tidal wave can happen quickly and destroy life

Third riddle

Earthquakes shake everything and shape the land

Common word

Seismic

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  • $\begingroup$ You've got something right, but you're missing important details that let you figure out the answer. Keep working on it! $\endgroup$ – Alenanno Oct 15 '16 at 20:46
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There have been answers similar to this but here's my take on it:

First Riddle:

Volcanic Eruptions

Take a look at my toe,

you could really say it's odd.

The foot of the volcano can be odd looking? I'm not sure about this one.

Hot or cold, you should know,

The foot of a volcano (pre-lava) isn't all that hot, but once the red stuff comes down it's a lot warmer.

it's my temperament, not my blood.

Erupting is something people when they're angry.

Second Riddle:

Tsunami

If you know me, I'm very deep

They come from the ocean (quite deep).

but not sweet to your taste.

Salt water is anything but sweet.

With time or in a heartbeat,
I give life or lay waste.

Water is a source of life, Tsunami destroy miles and miles in an instant.

Third Riddle:

Earthquakes

Though I have no head, have no hands,

Earthquakes have an epicenter no head or hands.

everything I'll be shaking.

They shake things.

More than water or desert sands,
everything I'll be shaping.

They change the landscape more than erosion.

They're all:

Natural disaters

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  • $\begingroup$ You've got something right, but you're missing important details that let you figure out the answer. :) $\endgroup$ – Alenanno Oct 15 '16 at 20:46
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I'll take a shot in the dark here:

Water

First riddle:

The end of a glacier is called is Glacier Terminus, or toe. It's not what we normally think of as a toe, but it's one nonetheless. It's very cold, and, clearly, that doesn't stem from blood, as it has none, so it is neither cold-blooded or warm-blooded. However, you could say it has a nasty "temperament."

Second riddle:

As it has been said before, this seems to refer to an ocean. It's salty, not sweet, gave birth to primordial life given much time, and lays ruin to buildings in a heartbeat, as Hurricane Matthew is doing at the time of this writing.

Third riddle:

It's been suggested that this is wind. I think it might be rain. The pounding of rain can shake just about anything, and the erosion of rain shapes lots of things, such as giant landforms, water, and sand (harder to find an example of this one).

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  • $\begingroup$ You've got something right, but you're missing important details that let you figure out the answer. Think harder! :P $\endgroup$ – Alenanno Oct 15 '16 at 20:47

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