# 3 = 6 ? Another non math question. Another Grandpa Mystery

Now I know Grandpa asks silly questions all the time.

He says to me:

"Son, this is based on my personal experience.

I was with a friend today. He made a gesture. By making this gesture he showed me that 3 can mean 6."

What gesture did Grandpa's friend make?

• Well I would have said it was something like this, but the puzzle a non-math question... DVL12 $\color{darkorange}{\bigstar}$ :D – Mr Pie Aug 26 '18 at 11:14
• I really hate long cipher puzzles. This is more of my type. – prog_SAHIL Aug 26 '18 at 15:44
• @DEEM is there supposed to be one definitive answer? – 1848 Aug 26 '18 at 20:08
• I think so @1848. The Pregnant Ladies answer is interesting but one I have in mind is "language" related – DrD Aug 26 '18 at 21:54
• Appreciate your comments. I thought just the non math clue and the Language tag was enough to explain the puzzle. But I guess it needed too much simplification to re open it. I respectfully disagree with members who put the puzzle on hold. But so be it. – DrD Aug 27 '18 at 14:43

I believe the answer is that

3 fingers represents 6 in American Sign Language.

The actual symbol is

• With the knowledge and language tags, I figured it had to be something like this. Tbh I thought you were going to say "yes, this is exactly what I was thinking", @jafe :P – El-Guest Aug 27 '18 at 14:26
• Please note that the 3 fingures in a different way also represent 3 or 9 in the sign language. – DrD Aug 27 '18 at 14:44
• Ah, nice answer. This is new to me. +1 – Anastasiya-Romanova 秀 Aug 28 '18 at 2:10
• Fun fact, this also says "W" :) – Elpharya Jan 31 '19 at 19:53

Well this is a bit far fetched but let's try:

Three pregnant women, each carrying one child equal six people. :)

• That is funny. LOL. But look at the clue. His friend showed him. – DrD Aug 26 '18 at 13:02

The Roman Number III = VI With the First two lines joined together at the bottom?

• Yes, like this: thumbs.dreamstime.com/b/… – filip Aug 26 '18 at 16:00
• And this matches the words in the question “He made a gesture. He showed me that …”. As soon as I re-read the question, this was obvious, but you beet me to it. – ctrl-alt-delor Aug 27 '18 at 9:38

Guess,

If three is a crowd, six could be a crowd too.

And

If grandpa was talking about having guests somewhere and if you have three guests it is a crowd, and if you have 6 it is also a crowd.

Perhaps

Grandpa and his friend return home after a long night at the bar. "Look grandpa," his friend says, holding up 3 fingers. "How many fingers am I holding up?" Even though the world spins around in circles, grandpa manages to focus his eyes on his friend's hand. The fingers blur and seem to split in two. "6," he breathes. "6 fingers."

• Upvote for Creativity – Khushraj Rathod Aug 27 '18 at 10:33

In English, 6 is the third 3-letter number (1,2,6).

Not completely "non-math", but the crux of my solution is linguistic:

3 (numbers) can mean (average to) 6, e.g. the three numbers 4, 5, 9.

Grandpa agreed to meet his friend at 3, the friend didn't arrive until 6.

• I like this answer better than the intended one. – prog_SAHIL Aug 27 '18 at 14:56

$$3!=6.$$

The story of three is $6$

so...

...the answer will be six with the help of using $3$ only.

• Title says nonmath question so I'm guessing its something else? – simonzack Aug 26 '18 at 11:20
• Not sure to understand @user584880: you have stated that 3! = 6, which is a known fact, but how is it a solution to the 3=6 puzzle? – xhienne Aug 26 '18 at 11:25

Another guess,

Is it because six has 3 letters?

The gesture Grandpa's friend made was the sign for the number 6 in American Sign Language. The sign consists of pointing your three middle fingers up while connecting your pinky and thumb, palm facing forwards. A picture of it can be found here.

Thus,

3 fingers = 6.

This fits the question because:

Apart from being language and gesture related, it does not involve math, and a previous question has indicated Grandpa lives in the U.S.

• I assume you arrived at the answer independently. El-guest answered a fraction before you may be. So I gave you +1. Good job. – DrD Aug 27 '18 at 14:47
• @DEEM Yes, I was typing out my answer and when I tried to submit I found the post had been closed during that time. When I happened to refresh as it was opened again I could not find the correct answer, didn't bother to check the comments on OP though :-) FWIW, I think the question was perfectly valid from the start; if you had the answer it was obvious it was the right one. – clid Aug 28 '18 at 7:31

When $$a(3)=6$$ According to OEIS, this is over $180,000$ results. In English, we would say, 'when is a(3) equal to 6', but if you were a big OEIS fan, and you know all sequences use 'a' terms, so you drop the sentence's reference to 'a' - 'when is 3 equal to 6?' is what you might say.

Some users here might find this answer sexist, but unfortunately, it is true.

In some countries, the legal status of a woman is worth half of that of a man.

So, my guess is

The testimony of six women equals to three men.

Could he mean this?

The “one, two, many” theory is that cultures developed words for “one” and “two” before anything else, and any numbers after are referred to as “many”. So three could be equal to six.

• $6!!=48$, though I don't see what that has to do with cans and bottles. – wizzwizz4 Aug 26 '18 at 17:30