Murphy's Law - Best Explanation And Examples


"If anything can go wrong, it will"

Murphy's Original Law
  • If there are two or more ways to do something, and one of those ways can result in a catastrophe, then someone will do it.

Murphy's Law

  • If anything can go wrong -- it will.

Murphy's Law First Corollary

  • Left to themselves, things tend to go from bad to worse.

Murphy's Law Second Corollary
  • It is impossible to make anything foolproof because fools are so ingenious.

The Murphy Law Philosophy
  • Smile... tomorrow will be worse. 


  1. If there is a possibility of several things going wrong, the one that will cause the most damage will be the first one to go wrong.
    Corollary - If there is a worse time for something to go wrong, it will happen then.
  2. If several things that could have gone wrong have not gone wrong, it would have been ultimately beneficial for them to have gone wrong.
  3. Anything that can go wrong will go wrong.
  4. If anything can't go wrong, it will anyway.
  5. If you perceive that there are four possible ways in which something can go wrong, and circumvent these, then a fifth way, unprepared for, will promptly develop.
  6. If everything seems to be going well, you have obviously overlooked something.
  7. Everything takes longer than you think.
  8. You never find a lost article until you replace it.
  9. If nobody uses it, there's a reason.
  10. You get the most of what you need the least.
  11. Nature always sides with the hidden flaw.
  12. Mother nature is a bitch. 

Best Example :
A slice of buttered toast, when dropped from a height, will always land butter side down This, the most famous of Murphy's paradoxes, is undeniably true. There is a full chance of the toast landing butter-side down. There is a reason why every piece of toast ever dropped lands butter side down. Most people deny this fact, and 'prove' to you that it isn't true by throwing pieces of toast into the air. The result is boring; 50% of the pieces landed butter-side up, while the other 50% landed butter-side down. However, this is not a true test of Murphy's law. It is not bad luck which caused the toast to fall; it's the stupidity of the person who threw them. The real importance of Murphy's law resides in the fact that it was bad luck that made the toast fall. If one was to sit at a table and push pieces of toast off your plate onto the floor, the results would be a phenomenal 100% butter-side down. The laws of rotational inertia state that the mass of an object determines the speed at which it rotates; the mass of an average piece of buttered toast is such that it will complete only one-half of one rotation if it falls any distance from approximately 0.5to 1.8m. m. This means that when a piece of buttered falls off your plate, it will always land with its butter side down.

Who was Murphy ?  Edward A. Murphy, Jr. was one of the engineers on the rocket-sled experiments that were done by the U.S. Air Force in 1949 to test human acceleration tolerances (USAF project MX981). One experiment involved a set of 16 accelerometers mounted to different parts of the subject's body. There were two ways each sensor could be glued to its mount, and somebody methodically installed all 16 the wrong way around. Murphy then made the original form of his pronouncement, which the test subject (Major John Paul Stapp) quoted at a news conference a few days later. Within months `Murphy's Law' had spread to various technical cultures connected to aerospace engineering. Before too many years had gone by variants had passed into the popular imagination, changing as they went. Most of these are variants on "Anything that can go wrong, will"; this is sometimes referred to as Finagle's Law. The memetic drift apparent in these mutants clearly demonstrates Murphy's Law acting on itself

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