The year is 1770. Sir Joseph Banks, an English naturalist, is wandering around the Endeavour River observing the flora and fauna of the Great Outback with Lieutenant James Cook. He spots one of those marsupials he’s seen around: long limbs, huge long rear feet, a tail like a dinosaur and a small curious head. It jumps around with its arms at its chest. The mothers carry their babies in pockets over their stomachs.
“What’s that?” Banks asks a nearby Aboriginal fellow.
“Kanguru,” he replies.
In his language of Guugu Yimithirr, “kanguru” means “I don’t understand you.” Banks and Cook do not know this. They rub their chins pensively.
“Kanguru, eh?” Banks replies as he jots down the spelling phonetically in the little diary he keeps in his pant pocket under the notes for July 12. A little switcheroo of the spelling, and “kangaroo” henceforth became the name for that awkward-limbed, furry marsupial.
This was the story of how kangaroos earned their names until the 1970s. It was a pretty entertaining etymology—and a great story—until that point. That’s when linguist John B. Haviland came along and realized that the "kanguru” Banks had heard the Aboriginal man say was actually the word “gangurru,” which is, indeed, their official term for the animal, not “I don’t understand.”
Whether you refer to them as gangurru or kangaroo, you can also call them by their nickname, simply “roo.” Endearingly, baby kangaroos, which are too cute for words, particularly when tucked into their mother’s pouches, are called joeys.
In today’s Amazing Mind Benders Page-A-Day® calendar, you must determine which of these eight kangaroo drawings are identical. To help you out, we’ll share a couple of facts about kangaroo anatomy with you.
Of course, we all know that female kangaroos have pouches in which they keep their babies, but did you know they are basically baby-making machines? The females actually have three vaginas and two uteruses, while some males have two-pronged penises. This maximizes the odds that a male kangaroo’s sperm will fertilize one of the female kangaroo’s eggs, and also enables a female kangaroo to literally always be pregnant! Okay, well perhaps that won’t help you solve this mind bender, but it is a super fun fact to consider while you do.
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The calendar that’s like a playground for your brain. Printed in vibrant full color, the Amazing Mind Benders Calendar treats puzzle lovers to a daily word, number, or spatial challenge. Can you navigate the maze in Pathfinder? Rearrange the dominos in Spot Check? Decipher the code in Form Letters? Perfectly balancing difficulty, solvability, and visual appeal, these puzzles get every day off to a smart start. Stumped? Don’t worry—answers are printed on the reverse side of each page.