This game is definitely for people who have too little to do (or maybe too much washing up). It only applies to the cutlery.

Start with a lot of cutlery (15 or more pieces) and a draining rack which has 3 slots for stacking them in. Select a piece one at a time in random order from the pile, then stack it in your preferred slot. The rules are

  • Each type of cutlery item must be divided between the slots as equally as possible. That is: if the number of knives washed is divisible by 3, then there should be an equal number of knives in each slot, if not, then the slots should be as close as possible to the average (ie one extra or one fewer in just one slot).
  • The total number of cutlery items washed up must be divided as equally as possible. Each slot should only be one item away from any other slot in total contents.
One optional rule (it makes little difference to the result)
  • Teaspoons can either count as ordinary spoons or be collected as a separate item type
If you are forced to break these rules before you run out of cutlery, you lose. Otherwise, you win!

Bonus question: is it always possible to make this come out? I suspect it may be. Has anyone got proof one way or the other?

Example play

OK, assume that you have arrived at this layout fairly easily:

  Slot 1   Slot 2    Slot 3
    FF      FS        FSK  legal
You draw a knife, and choose to put it in slot 2, so you have this:
    FF      FSK       FSK  legal
You draw a fork! Arggg! Now your options are
    FFF    FSK      FSK   illegal - breaks rule 1
OR  FF     FFSK     FSK   illegal - breaks rule 2

Game over!

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