If you’ve recently read the riddle that starts with “I turn polar bears white” and are stumped, then you’re not alone. This riddle’s been around for a long time, but it recently went viral again during the pandemic. Here’s a look at exactly what the riddle says and what the suggested answer is.
The riddle typically reads like this:
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?
This riddle has gotten a lot of attention recently when it was shared on TikTok by Jack Fanshawe of New York. His video was posted in early August and has 1.8 million reactions and 122,000 comments.
Are you ready for the answer to the riddle? Read on to the next section to find out.
Here’s the Answer to the Riddle
The answer to the riddle is “No.”
All riddles have a trick to them, and the trick to this riddle is that there is no official answer. The real question is simply: “Can you guess this riddle?” You don’t have to actually figure out the ins and outs of each part of the riddle. Rather, can you guess the answer? If you don’t know the answer to the different parts of the riddle, then the answer to the entire riddle is “no.”
Although “no” is the traditionally expected answer, you could make an argument for “yes” too. Anyone can make a guess about the riddle, even if the guess is wrong. So “yes” or “no” should traditionally be accepted.
But quite a few people in discussion forums just aren’t happy with that conclusion, so they’re coming up with ideas of their own. Here are the proposed alternative answers that some people are suggesting.
In a discussion on English Forums from back in 2006, one person suggested the answer was “Pressure.” They wrote:
Polar bears are white because the pressure at the poles is low, so they have to be able to absorb heat.
Pressure makes you cry if it’s too much.
Pressure in your bladder makes you have to pee.
Peer pressure makes girls comb their hair
Celebrities usually crack under pressure.
Many normal people will shine under pressure.
Pancakes turn brown thanks to pressure generated by the heat.
Champagne will bubble until the pressure of the carbonation has disappeared.
If you squeeze something under pressure, BAM, there it goes.
If you are “looking” at pressure, you’re in it. for example–>in an airplane your ears pop under pressure!
Others suggest that the answer is time. They say that polar bears turn white with time, time makes people cry, men eventually have to pee given enough time, girls have to comb their hair when it grows long over time, celebrities don’t look good over time, and time puts pressure on things, making them “pop.” This is, admittedly, a stretch, but some people like “time” as the answer.
Others suggested that the answer is “Yes, water” (or in the alternative, “rain.”) They say that water makes people cry, it makes men need to pee, it makes girls need to comb their hair, it makes celebrities look stupid but normal people can look famous when their hair is wet. One person suggested that when water “evaporates” pancakes turn brown, and that water is needed for champagne to bubble. But once again, this is a big stretch to make it fit.
In the end though, the simplest answer is simply “no.” Like all riddles, there’s a trick. The trick to this riddle is that the only relevant part to the riddle is the final question at the end.