**Problem:** The following operations are permitted with the quadratic polynomial $ax^2 +bx +c:$ (a) switch $a$ and $c$, (b) replace $x$ by $x + t$ where $t$ is any real. By repeating these operations, can you transform $x^2 − x − 2$ into $x^2 − x − 1?$

**My Attempt:** Notice that the sum of coefficients $S\equiv a+b+c\pmod{t}$ is invariant. This is clear if we switch $a$ and $c.$ If we replace $x$ with $x+t$ then we have $ax^2+(2at+b)x+(at^2+bt+c)$ and so $S\equiv a+2at+b+at^2+bt+c\equiv a+b+c\pmod{t}.$ Now for $x^2-x-2$ we have $S\equiv -2\pmod{t}$ and at the end we want $S\equiv -1\pmod{t}$, which is impossible. I am not sure whether this is correct because $t\in \mathbb{R}.$ So any inputs will be much appreciated.