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“...on the next episode of Planet Money, we welcome famous author and...”

I woke up in a hospital to the sound of radio playing softly in the background. To my left, three stacks of machine beeped and purred, checking my vitals. To my right, stood a small table with a glass of iced water, along with two packs of M&Ms, my favorite candy. Suddenly, a strange sensation arose within me, telling me to remember something.

A man walked in with a white coat and clipboard:

“Hi, my name is Dr. Young. You appeared to be in a coma since last night. We think you are good, but still let’s go through some logic questions to make sure you brain work normally. First question, what’s your full name?”

“My name is Daniel Ringwald Engels.”

“That’s good. Where are you from?”

“Los Angeles, I guess?”

“Two for two so far. Do you know who is the president?”

“Donald Trump”

What was I trying to remember?

“On what year did 9/11 happen?”

“2001”

“What’s the difference between 11 and 9?”

“2”

“Seems like your brain is working up to light speed again! We will arrange your leave asap, cool?”

The strange sensation grew stronger and stronger. Suddenly, I realized what I was trying to remember. I tried to speak, but stammered nonsense instead.

  1. What was I trying to remember?
  2. What clues in the story point to this?
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Quite a long shot, but I think this is something to do with:

Dr. Dre, with references to his albums and songs.
You are trying to remember that you are in fact Dr. Dre.

Now, this really isn't my genre of music, so I used a lot of Google-fu to get these links, and I could be massively wrong!


To my right, stood a small table with a glass of iced water, along with two packs of M&Ms, my favorite candy.

Eminem is a frequent collaborator of Dr. Dre (or vice versa, rap isn't my thing)
Tupac (sounds like 'two pack') is another such collaborator (thanks kedarguru!)

“Hi, my name is Dr. Jackson. (subsequently edited to Dr. Young)

Ice Cube is a frequent collaborator, and his real surname is Jackson
Dr. Dre's real surname is Young

“My name is Daniel Ringwald Engels.”

A lengthy name, but it abbreviates to DRE, as in Dr. Dre

“That’s good. Where are you from?”
“Los Angeles, I guess?”

A song titled Some L.A. N**** from his album 2001

“Two for two so far. Do you know who is the president?”
“Donald Trump”

Possibly a reference to the album The Chronic which samples a song titled Impeach the President

“On what year did 9/11 happen?”
“2001”

(and)

“Seems like your brain is working up to light speed again! We will arrange your leave asap, cool?”

An album named 2001 with a song titled Light Speed

“What’s the difference between 11 and 9?”
“2”

A song named What's the Difference from the above-mentioned album.

Suddenly, a strange sensation arose within me, telling me to remember something.

(and)

Suddenly, I realized what I was trying to remember. I tried to speak, but stammered nonsense instead.

A song titled Forgot about Dre, once again from the same album 2001 (thanks again, kedarguru!)

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  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Gjb cnpx = ghcnp ? $\endgroup$ – kedarguru May 31 '18 at 5:01
  • $\begingroup$ Ooh, very clever, @kedarguru , many thanks! $\endgroup$ – Phylyp May 31 '18 at 5:02
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    $\begingroup$ The puzzle as a whole may be referring to (Sbetbg nobhg Qer), which is actually brilliant given the situation. I love it. $\endgroup$ – kedarguru May 31 '18 at 5:08
  • $\begingroup$ Aah, nicely self-referential! $\endgroup$ – Phylyp May 31 '18 at 5:09
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A lot of the clues seem to point towards this conclusion.

You are a test subject from the game Portal, who has just woken up.

Explanation of clues:

In Portal, you wake up from a bed that looks like it could be a contraption measuring your vitals. On a nearby table, there is a clipboard, a radio playing from the beginning, and a mug. All three items appear in the story. Dr. Johnson could be Cave Johnson. EDIT: Just realized it said Jackson instead of Johnson. Oh well. EDIT 2: The question was edited so now he's apparently Dr. Young.

To answer your first question...

Perhaps you are waking up after you have completed testing and they wiped your memory so you don't share what you've seen. You are trying to remember what you went through, which was all of the testing.

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  • $\begingroup$ Is the name Dr. Jackson or Dr. Johnson? $\endgroup$ – prit.patel May 31 '18 at 4:17
  • $\begingroup$ Good attempt though! $\endgroup$ – kedarguru May 31 '18 at 4:18
  • $\begingroup$ I'm sticking with my answer despite the name confusion. I'm probably wrong, but it seemed to fit much of the story. Still don't have an explanation for M&M's or either of the two names. $\endgroup$ – Riley May 31 '18 at 4:20
  • $\begingroup$ I changed the doctor name to further cement the actual answer :) Good guess however. $\endgroup$ – Minh Tran May 31 '18 at 4:26

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