Riddle: What becomes white when it is dirty?




This Riddle starts out with a misdirect. Riddle Robot Eyezak knows that when most Humans think about something being dirty, they immediately jump to something that is covered in that brown dirt we find on the ground. By exploiting this thought process, Eyezak has set us down the wrong path already. Instead, we should focus on things that are white that could cause something to be dirty. Here is a quick list:

  • milk
  • cauliflower
  • chalk

Now that we have a list of things that are white, we can move on to the next step. We should try to figure out which of these things can make a surface dirty, and in such a way that the average Human would call it dirty. Below we address each one:


This Riddle talks about something white making another surface dirty. Milk is white, most of the time. As any child knows, it is pretty easy to spill a glass of this taste beverage, and the ensuing puddle. A mom would say that the floor is dirty probably. But would the floor “become white” when the milk makes it dirty?

Well that largely depends on the floor. We can say for certain that a dark colored carpet would become dirty if milk we spilled on it. The problem is that a dark carpet would absorb the white milk, and honestly you might not even be able to see that there is a mess at all. Then there is a dark colors tile floor. Yes, you would be able to see white milk on dark colored tile floor, so we could say that the floor becomes white when it is dirty.

Alas, this is only with a small percentage of all floors. It is pretty rare for a tile floor to be a dark color, at least in modern houses. Because of this we can probably say that Riddle Robot Eyezak was not expecting this to be the answer. He typically wants the answer to represent the norm, not the exception. We should rule this one out, and move on.


Anyone who has ever eaten cauliflower knows that it crumbles pretty easily if it is raw, and falls apart pretty easily if it is cooked properly. This tends to facilitate messes when eating it. The crumbs and pieces that fall from cauliflower usually have stems attached to them too, so they easily stick to cloth-like surfaces, like briars from a field stick to your socks.

Like milk, when cauliflower falls on a dark colored floor, the floor will get dirty. Moms around the world would easily describe the floor as having been made dirty, and that the floor appears white. Unlike milk, if cauliflower falls on a dark colored carpet, the carpet will not soak it up. It will just sit on top of the carpet, in a pile of organic mess, and be completely visible to any person who looks upon the carpet.

Our Riddle Robot Eyezak requires that this apply to all or most of all scenarios though. If for instance the floor was already a light color, then the Mom might not say that the “floor becomes white” when cauliflower is dropped on it. Instead she might just say it is dirty. Riddle Robot Eyezak wants to be sure that the prior color of the surface was not white, or whiteish. When it was previously, then the change is usually indistinguishable. Instead lets find something white that always goes on something dark.


This Riddle is about a blackboard. The image is of a blackboard you might get in school.

Chalk is one of those things that you deliberately put on a dark surface in order to use it. You might use it to write something on the blackboard for a class to see. Or you might draw a picture of you and your mommy on the pavement outside of your house to surprise her when she gets home. Chalk has a primary function of making a dark surface white, for the purpose of communication usually.

There are rare situations where chalk is used outside of this primary function. For instance chalk can be used to dry a person’s hands in gymnastics or rock climbing… but this is still pretty rare. Now that we have identified that chalk is always put on a dar surface, and that chalk is white, we can pretty definitively conclude that this is the “white” from our riddle. What is the surface that is turned white though?

Well, if you had asked this riddle like 20 or 30 years ago, the answer may have been ambiguous and not clearly one thing; however, in the modern day, almost no children play outside using chalk any more. At least not in the USA. Riddle Robot Eyezak knows that everything is digital now, and that this riddle should take that into account. Knowing that, the only common usage would be on the blackboard in a classroom.

Therefore, as you can see, the answer to our Riddle, from Eyezak the Riddle Robot, is most likely blackboard. A limited number of other answers might be acceptable, but Eyezak wants an answer that matches the question but also matches the length of the blanks he gives you in his Riddle Game. Blackboard is the only one that works for that. If you have a different answer, or need more information, put it in the comments below!

One Last Thing:

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