Sometimes places become famous not because of what’s there, but because of the good times people have there.
There’s a somewhat historic bar in Singapore called the Colbar. Apparently that’s short for “Colonial Bar”. It’s nothing to look at: pretty primitive, basically a large shed with no air conditioning and a roofed-over patio made of concrete. Its main charm is that it’s “locked in a time warp”. It used to be set in the British army barracks, but it was moved in 2003. According to a food blog:
Thanks to the petitions of Colbar regulars and the subsequent intervention of the Jurong Town Council (JTC), who wanted to preserve its colourful history, Colbar was replicated and relocated just a stone’s throw away from the old site. Built brick by brick and copied to close exact, Colbar reopened its doors last year looking no different from what it used to be.
It’s now in one of the few remaining forested patches of Singapore. The Chinese couple who run it are apparently pretty well-off; they’ve been at it since the place opened in 1953, even before Singapore became a country.
Every Friday, a bunch of philosophers go there to drink beer, play chess, strum guitars and talk. Since my wife teaches in the philosophy department at NUS, we became part of this tradition, and it’s a lot of fun.
Anyway, the last time we went there, one of the philosophers posed this puzzle:
You know a woman who has two children. One day you see her walking by with one. You notice it’s a boy. What’s the probability that both her children are boys?
Of course I instantly thought of the probability puzzles we’ve discussed here. It’s not exactly any of the versions we have already talked about. So I thought you folks might enjoy it.
What’s the answer?