If His Hat Is There, He's There
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If His Hat is There, Then He' s There
A math professor at MIT got to class early. As he placed his hat on his desk, he
remembered that he had left some papers in his office.
But on the way back to the classroom, the chairman of the department stopped him
and talked to him at length about new office assignments for tenured faculty. By the time
the professor returned, it was fifteen minutes into the class period and the students were
The next day, as the bell rang to announce the beginning of class, the professor
strode to the podium. "You had no excuse for leaving class," he said.
But professor," one of the students said, "you were not there." We waited the full
Nonsense. Didn' t you see my hat on the desk? If my hat was there, it meant I was
there." Then he proceeded with the day' s lecture.
The next day when the professor arrived at class, he found the room empty. But on
each desk was a hat.