Mental Floss

Brain Game: Don't Squeeze Me!


You may have seen this riddle make its way across the Internet over the last few months. I feel that it's probably akin to the "gry" riddle, where the original meaning was skewed due to changes from source-to-source. Anyway, I've seen people convinced that the answer to this riddle is time, air, God, pressure, and a few other things. Some have quoted a suspicious-looking poem that it supposedly references.

What's worse, there's an obviously bogus introduction that claims that "97 percent of Harvard graduates couldn't solve this, but 84 percent of kindergarten students answered it within six minutes." That's caused many to believe that the answer is simply no. While the whole statistical analysis deal is almost certainly fake, it's easy to assume that educated types would not give up on the puzzle, while kindergarten students would be more apt to admit defeat and expect to be told the answer.

The point is, now it's time to give it the mental_floss treatment. What's the answer to (or the story behind) this riddle?

I turn polar bears white And I will make you cry. I make guys have to pee And girls comb their hair. I make celebrities look stupid And normal people look like celebrities. I turn pancakes brown And make your champagne bubble. If you squeeze me, I'll pop. If you look at me, you'll pop. Can you guess the riddle?