Nov. 17, 2005, 11:41 a.m.

Universal Laws

The following was taken from my Linux box, in a program called "fortune"; they pertain to certain laws concerning all sorts of circumstances. Here goes...

1. Mitchell's Law of Committees: Any simple problem can be made insoluble if enough meetings are held to discuss it.
2. Pohl's Law: Nothing is so good that somebody, somewhere, will not hate it.
3. Fresco's Discovery: If you knew what you were doing you'd probably be bored.
4. Savage's Law of Expediency: You want it bad, you'll get it bad.
5. Leibowitz's Rule: When hammering a nail, you will never hit your finger if you hold the hammer with both hands.
6. Cropp's Law: The amount of work done varies inversely with the time spent in the office.
7. Non-Reciprocal Laws of Expectations: Negative expectation yields negative results; positive expectation yields negative results.
8. Whitehead's Law: The obvious answer is always overlooked.
9. Agnes' Law: Almost everything in life is easier to get into than out of.
10. Simon's Law: Everything put together falls apart sooner or later.
11. Hofstadter's Law: It always takes longer that you expect, even when you take Hofstadter's Law into account.
12. Flugg's Law: When you need to knock on wood is when you realize that the world is composed of vinyl, naugahyde and aluminum.
13. Jones' Second Law: The man who smiles when things go wrong has thought of someone to blame it on.
14. Captain Penny's Law: You can fool all of the people some of the time, and some of the people all the time, but you can't fool mom.
15. Ducharme's Precept: Opportunity always knocks at the least opportune moment.
16. Ducharme's Axiom: If you view your problem closely enough, you will recognize yourself as part of the problem.

The following additions was emailed to me by Mark Ramos on 16 November; I have a hard time deleting it, so here goes... (I think it's open source)

17. Lorenz's Law of Mechanical Repair: After your hands become coated with grease, your nose will begin to itch.
18. Anthony's Law of the Workshop: Any tool, when dropped, will roll to the least accessible corner.
19. Kovac's Conundrum: When you dial a wrong number, you never get an engaged (busy) one.
20. Cannon's Karmic Law: If you tell the boss you were late for work because you had a flat tire, the next morning you will have a flat tire.
21. O'Brien's Variation Law: If you change queues, the one you have left will start to move faster than the one you are in now.
22. Bell's Theorem: When the body is immersed in water, the telephone rings.
23. Ruby's Principle of Close Encounters: The probability of meeting someone you know increases when you are with someone you don't want to be seen with.
24. Willoughby's Law: When you try to prove to someone that a machine won't work, it will.
25. Zadra's Law of Biomechanics: The severity of the itch is inversely proportional to the reach.
26. Breda's Rule: At any event, the people whose seats are furthest from the aisle arrive last.
27. Owen's Law: As soon as you sit down to a cup of hot coffee, your boss will ask you to do something which will last until the coffee is cold.
28. Howden's Law: You remember you have to mail a letter only when you're near the mailbox.