Ballon Man


A man flying in a hot air balloon realizes that he is lost, so reduces his altitude and spots a man on the ground down below. Lowering the balloon a little further, the ballonist shouts "Excuse me Sir! But can you help me? I promised my friend that I would meet him half an hour ago, but I don't know where I am!"

The man on the ground replies, "Yes. You are in a hot air balloon, hovering at approximately 30 feet. You are between 40 and 41 degrees north latitude, and between 58 and 59 degrees west longitude."

"You must be a geologist," says the balloonist.

"Why, yes I am," replies the man on the ground. "How on earth did you know?"

"Well", says the balloonist, "Everything you have told me is well described. It is also technically and geographically accurate. However, I have no idea what to make of your information, and the fact of the matter is I have spent much valuable time conversing with you and I am still lost. Furthermore, I will not be able to make my appointment now."

The geologist below nods his head and says, "You must be a manager in an oil company."

"Why, yes I am," replies the balloonist, "But how did you guess that?"

"Well," says the geologist, "You have no idea where you are or where you are going. Also, you have made a promise which you have no idea how to keep, and you expect me to solve your problem for you. The real fact of the matter is that you are in exactly the same position now as what you were in before we met, yet now your predicament has somehow become my fault."