Is boarding a plane home, and as he’s loading his luggage in the over head, notices a Marine Lance Corporal snoozing against the window. The Air Force Captain grins a bit, knowing Marines reputation for being jar heads, and decides he’s going to have a bit of fun.
Sitting next to the marine, he nudges him awake and they begin to have a conversation. Where did you serve, how long have you been in, so on, so forth. Eventually, after take-off, the Marine goes to prop against the window again to sleep, but the Captain stops him.
“We have a flight ahead of us, what about a game?” Asked the Captain. The Marine shrugged, “What kind of game?” “Well,” the Captain said, “I’ll ask you a question, and if you can’t get it, you pay me $50. Then you ask me a question, and if I can’t get it, I’ll pay you $500.”
The Marine considered this for a moment, and agreed. The Captain then asked him, “What’s the distance from the surface of the Earth to the sun?” The Marine frowned in thought, and after a while, pulled out a crisp $50 bill and handed it to the Captain. The Captain grinned. This was great, he thought, I’ll take this kid for all he has.
“Your turn,” said the Captain. The Marine hesitated a bit, thinking it over, before asking “What goes up a hill on two legs, but comes down on three?” The Captain opened his mouth, but closed it. He was stumped. The Marine took this time, rolled over, and decided to nap.
As the Marine napped, the Captain began to use the resources he had available. He began to search the internet, called people he knew at the pentagon, everything he could think of. But he could not find the answer.
The plane landed, the Marine woke up, and the Captain, as promised, handed him $500. They began to unload their luggage and debark from the plane when the Captain stopped him and asked, “Kid. I got to know. What goes up a hill on two legs but comes down on three?” The Marine stopped, considered the Captain for a moment, and with a shrug, he handed the Captain $50.