January 31st, 2013

krazy koati

The gods may throw the dice

The Price Is Right snuck in another playing of ``Pay The Rent'' this week, to my surprise, because last week they'd done a Salute To Nurses and I would've figured they'd go for the $100,000 tease then instead. Nope; the Nurses got Plinko but not the really big nobody-seems-to-get-this payout. Once again the contestant should have bailed out with $10,000, and by all rights should have, except she apparently comes from a land where a small bottle of Liquid Plumr plausibly costs more than $5.48.

Well, here goes. The prizes were the bottle of ``Drain Care'' product ($3.99), a bottle of tabasco ($1.69), a bag of Funnyuns ($1.49), a Crunch bar ($0.89), Ziploc bags ($2.69), and a jar of grape jelly ($2.79). Her placement was to start with the tabasco (level cost $1.69), and then the Funnyuns and Crunch bar ($2.38 total), then the jelly and the Ziploc bags ($5.48), and the Liquid Plumr on top ($3.99), as Drew Carey noted, the same way everybody arranges stuff in their house.

My Matlab/Octave script once again digs out two distinct solution sets. The first starts with the Ziploc bags ($2.69 level); then the tabasco and Funnyuns ($3.18); then the Crunch bar and grape jelly ($3.68); and finally the drain cleaner ($3.99). The alternative arrangement is to start with the grape jelly ($2.79); then the tabasco and Funnyuns again ($3.18, which made me think i was reading the wrong line of my results table); then the chocolate bar and the Ziploc bags ($3.58); and finally the Liquid Plumr ($3.99).

There've been multiple solutions now often enough that I'm tempted to go back to my old data sets, from when I worked this out by hand, and see whether the many times I found only the one solution was just because I gave up too soon. Maybe I will if I find an evening with more important stuff I should be doing first.

So far for the season, the range of prize prices has been $3.90, $4.80, $4.70, and $3.10. The range in winning levels, taking the more generous range, has been $3.20, $2.00, $2.30, and now a vicious $1.30.

Trivia: An 1842 report to the British government on the sanitary conditions of the working class found that more than 57 percent of working-class children born in Manchester died before reaching five years of age. Source: Coal: A Human History, Barbara Freese.

Currently Reading: A Game Of Inches: The Stories Behind The Innovations That Shaped Baseball, Peter Morris.

PS: Reading the Comics, January 29, 2013, as there just are that many comic strips telling math jokes out there.