Rain is the topic of this riddle, and what this picture is of

Riddle: What doesn’t get any wetter, no matter how much rain falls on it?

Answer:

WATER

Explanation:

What a Riddle! When it rains, things get wet! A bunch of tiny droplets of water fall from the cloud, high in the sky, and land on surfaces that are exposed. This creates a thin film of water on top of that surface, and as Humans we refer to that surface as “being wet.” Some surfaces can actually absorb water, like clothes. These surfaces become damp and actually retain the water from the rain inside them. They are also considered “wet.”

So with those facts in place, what could possibly have rain fall on it, yet somehow not get any wetter, no matter how much falls? It is an interesting question, and certainly one that is worth exploring and analyzing. The best place to start here is to come up with a list of things that rain can fall on, and then try to rule out as many as possible.

  • roofs of buildings
  • vehicles
  • hair
  • clothes
  • ground
  • body of water

Roofs of Buildings

Humans have been sheltering themselves since basically the beginning of time. We as Humans love research and have found through that research that even as early as The Stone Age man lived in dwellings that could shelter them from the elements. Caves we among the first of these types of dwellings, which had “ground” (talked about later) as their roofs. Over the ages though, we have upgraded to man made structures that include a roof.

Typically these roofs are attached to buildings that serve a purpose, such as a home or office. One of the primary functions of the roof itself is to prevent things that fall from the sky from touching the heads and shoulders (sometimes the full body) of any person within the dwelling. One of those things it protects from is rain. Because of this fact, roofs get more rain than most Humans do.

The question is, do roofs get wet? Yes they do, in the strict sense of the word. Droplets of rain fall on the roof. The roof gets covered by a thin film of water. Once enough rain has accumulated on the roof, it starts to bead up. Beads of water are able to “hydroplane” off of the roof into the gutters; however, that action is really only possible because the roof is already wet. Since this is the case, it is unlikely that “roof” is the answer to our riddle. What is next on our list?

Vehicles

Similarly to buildings with roofs, vehicles protect us from objects that fall from the sky, at least light objects like rain. Vehicles also have other major functions like allowing us to move quickly from one location to another, providing us with a way to travel with friends safely, or even to provide us with some forms of entertainment. Despite that though, they are relatively good at protecting us from some elements, all while allowing us to move quickly.

But, does a vehicle get wet. Again yes, and much for the same reason as the roofs do. While moving over the water covered roads or water filled air, the vehicle is constantly colliding with our falling rain. This in turn creates that wet surface effect we described earlier. As we travel, the rain beads up, and moves along our wet surface to partially clear our vehicle off. Still though, for that to happen, the surface must be wet. So this is not he answer either. Next…

Hair

Most humans have some sort of hair, or at least the capacity to grow it in an exposed portion of their skin. Many Humans have a significant amount of hair on top of their head, which can sometimes be exposed to the rainfall from our gracious clouds. It stands to reason then that it could actually be the answer to Riddle Robot Eyezak’s question, but only if it meets the second criteria of his quandary: does it get wet?

Hair is a rather unique material, at least in the context that we are talking about here. It has the unique property of being comprised of many, many, many tiny surfaces, which group together to form a singular uniform object. Each strand is very thin, and has a tiny surface on its circumference; however, in between each strand is a similarly tiny gap that normally holds air.

When rain falls upon the outer surface of the hair, the resulting water tends to be soaked up, filling those little gaps in between the hair strands. In fact there is another unique thing that happens with hair, which is that the strands are subsequently held closer together and are “bonded” in a sense, in a way that they previously were not. Water in your hair is almost like a “glue” that keeps its individual pieces together in a way that is stronger at resisting outside forces.

But does it get wet? Yes it does. The surface of each individual hair strand becomes covered in water, and that is what creates that “bond” with the adjacent hair strands. This state of being covered in water is still called “being wet,” even though it is a bunch of tiny surfaces. Eyezak knows this riddle is tough, and he is expecting us to export each of these potential solutions at this level of detail to track down the answer. We should move on because this is not it.

Clothes

As mentioned before, cloth has a property that allows it to consume rain, and hold it for extended periods of time. Clothes are made of cloth, so it stands to reason that clothes additionally have this property. Knowing that clothes actually hold water in them, and that rain provides the clothes with a source of water, can we conclude anything about the clothes being “wet” as a way of either confirming it as the answer, or ruling it completely out?

Yes we do have enough information at this point. Clothes in fact do “get wet,” which is a state of clothing that most Humans cannot stand. Eyezak is counting on you to know this, since you are Human. As mentioned above, clothes soak up water, and that state is called “being wet;” therefore it is unlikely that clothes are the answer to this riddle, despite the existence of so many different types of it out in the market.

Ground

On Earth, there is a lot of open land, or “ground,” and land masses cover roughly 1/3 the surface of the Earth. It stands to reason then that a significant portion of rain will fall on all of the land, and there is little that you, me, or Eyezak the Riddle Robot can do about it. But we really should not care about doing anything about it anyways, because rain is an essential part of our eco system, pretty much all around the Earth.

Rain provides much needed hydration to the plant & animal life on Earth. Plants are a required resource for Human life to exist here because plants produce one important byproduct that we as Humans cannot live without: Oxygen! The water resulting from rain also provides hydration to animals that live further inland from the coasts, and does so in a purer form: unsalted. This is required for most animals to live and thrive.

All of this water is rained upon the ground. The ground then soaks up that water and either creates large bodies that animals can drink from, or the natural hydration that are needed by the roots of plants. But because the ground does in fact soak up into itself or hold that above itself all that water from the rain, it does in fact “get wet,” which unfortunately rules it out as the answer to the question posed by our Riddle Robot Eyezak.

Body of Water

As mentioned above, water can gather in any number of formations, while still being exposed to the rainfall we experience from our clouds. It can be in the form of an ocean, a lake, river, stream, creek, pond, puddle, rainfall measurement cup, or any number of other “containers” that typically hold water in them. These masses of water are called “bodies of water,” which is typically referred to as “water” by most humans.

Water can be rained upon. The water from the rain is accepted into the body of water itself, and becomes part of that body of water. But as discussed previously, in order for something to “be wet,” it must have water on top of or soaked into it. Since water falling on water actually just becomes “more water,” the water is not wet. Based on those facts, it seems like this is our only logical answer.

Background:

This picture is about water, the answer to this riddle, and the only thing that does not get wetter when rained upon.

This riddle had a lot to do with water. Water is a deep topic (LOL), so maybe we can discuss it a bit. We can talk about how much of it is on Earth and where to find it.

Water on Earth

On Earth, the surface is considered to be a shell by most modern scientific theories. Inside that shell is hot magma, or liquid rock, that is ready to burst out of any of the shell’s orifices at any moment it can. The pressure inside is extremely immense, and is one of the big reasons it is so hot and liquid in there.

On the outside of the shell however, we have massive divots of land. Held within these divots of land are giant pools of liquid water, which provide the plants and animals of earth with an essential resource. About 2/3s of the Earth’s surface is covered in water, which makes it a very abundant resource.

Where to find Water on Earth

Being the most massive resource, water can be found pretty much anywhere you look on Earth, at least in small quantities, but most likely in large quantities. The Earth’s surface is littered with indentions that tend to gather water for the world to consume. This indentions come in many shapes and sizes, and are therefore classified in numerous different ways, depending on where they are located and how large they are.

Oceans make up the largest percentage of visible water on Earth by far. Even though this riddle is not about oceans specifically, the answer, water, is found in the largest quantity within them, which the Riddle Robot Eyezak knows quite well. Oceans are such large bodies of water, that they are not surrounded by land, they contain land. Oceans are huge and hard to break into groupings of water. As such there are only 5 oceans currently in the world (7 if you split the larger ones).

Seas are similar to oceans in a lot of ways. They are huge bodies of water in their own right, and have their own large ecosystems. The biggest factor that differentiates Oceans from Seas is that Seas are surrounded, at least partially, by land, where as Oceans are so large that they surround land instead. There are numerous Seas in the world, numbering closer to 100. Seas are sometimes hard to segment from oceans, in that a sea can be part of an ocean that is partially surrounded by land.

Rivers, Streams, Creeks, and other “lines of water” are also very common. There are 1000s of them in the world, and they vary in breadth, depth and length, which not only counts towards their classification name, but also towards their worthiness of mentioning. Many main rivers are displayed on maps, which tributaries and smaller are generally not, until you get to extremely localized type maps.

Lakes, Ponds, Lochs and other smaller, enclosed bodies of water are also common. There are 1000s of those throughout the world as well. Much of the classification of these types of bodies are based off of size, but there are a plethora of other factors that go into the decision too. We will not cover those.

Do your own research if you like. There are tons of bodies of water out there, and each type has its own way of being classified and distinguished from the others. You can start on Wikipedia.

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