Skozi grede > Lepo povedano

Murphy's Laws

Selected and edited by M. Divjak


    Things in general
    Work in general

    Projects and plans
    Experiments and data
    Equipment and tools
    Computers and programs
    Writing and papers

    Leadership and management
    Companies and hierarchy

    Army and combat
    Law and lawyers
    Medicine and doctors
    School and teachers

    Home life

Things in general

    If anything can go wrong, it will.

    If there is a possibility of several things going wrong, the
    one that will cause the most damage will be the one to go

    If you know something can go wrong and prepare, something else
    will go wrong.

    Anything that begins well, ends badly, anything that begins
    badly, ends worse.

    Sooner or later, the worst possible set of circumstances is
    bound to occur.

    Negative expectations yield negative results. Positive
    expectations yield negative results.

    Nothing matters very much, and very few things matter at all.

Work in general

    No matter how much you do, you'll never do enough.

    What you don't do is always more important than what you do.

    Whenever you set out to do something, something else must be
    done first.

    Any task worth doing was worth doing yesterday.

    Nothing is as easy as it looks.

    If it looks easy, it's tough. If it looks tough, it's

    Everything takes longer than you think.

    The first ninety percent of the task takes ninety percent of
    the time, and the last ten percent takes the other ninety

    There is nothing so simple that it can't be done wrong.

    Once a job is fouled up, anything done to improve it only makes
    it worse.

    Success always occurs in private, and failure in full view.

Projects and plans

    The more carefully you plan a project, the more confusion there
    is when something goes wrong.

    The more complicated and grandiose the plan, the greater the
    chance of failure.

    Authorization for a project will be granted only when none of
    the authorizers can be blamed if the project fails but when all
    of the authorizers can claim credit if it succeeds.

    Zahteve po spremebi načrtov se pojavijo potem in samo potem,
    ko so načrti gotovi.

    Need for project modifications increases proportionnally to
    project completion.

    Nothing ever comes out as planned.

    Nothing ever gets built on schedule or within budget.

    The greater the funding, the longer it takes to make the

    The amount of time required to complete a project is precisely
    equal to the length of time already spent on it.


    All great discoveries are made by mistake.

    Progress consists in replacing a theory that is wrong with one
    more subtly wrong.

    Exceptions always outnumber rules.

    There are some things which are impossible to know - but it is
    impossible to know which things these are.

    It is a simple task to make things complex, but a complex task
    to make them simple.

    Complex problems have simple, easy-to-understand wrong answers.

    For every complex problem, there is a solution that is simple,
    neat, and wrong.

    Inside every large problem is a small problem struggling to get

    The solution to a problem changes the nature of the problem.

    Every solution breeds new problems.

    A conclusion is the place where you get tired of thinking.

Experiments and data

    If an experiment works, something has gone wrong.

    Never replicate a successful experiment.

    Experiments should be reproducible - they should all fail in
    the same way.

    Only errors exist.

    One man's error is another man's data.

    In any collection of data, the figure most obviously correct,
    beyond all need of checking, is the mistake.

    Always draw your curves first, then plot your data.

    If the facts do not conform to the theory, they must be
    disposed of.

Equipment and tools

    Everything put together falls apart sooner or later.

    Other people's tools work only in other people's gardens.

    If nobody uses it, there's a reason.

Computers and programs

    Program complexity grows until it exceeds the capacity of the

Writing and papers

    There is nothing so small that it can't be blown out of

    Any simple idea will be worded in the most complicated way.

    If you explain so clearly that nobody can misunderstand,
    somebody will.

Teamwork and meetings

    Teamwork is essential. It allows you to blame someone else.

    The man who can smile when things go wrong has thought of
    someone he can blame it on.

    Everyone has a scheme that will not work.

    No matter what goes wrong, there is always somebody who knew it

    You are always complimented on the item which took the least
    effort to prepare.

    No matter how well you do your job, a superior will seek to
    modify the results.

    A meeting is an event at which the minutes are kept and the
    hours are lost.

    The length of a meeting rises with the square of the number of
    people present.

    The efficiency of a committee meeting is inversely proportional
    to the number of participants and the time spent on

    The less you enjoy serving on committees, the more likely you
    are to be pressed to do so.


    An expert is one who knows more and more about less and less
    until he knows everything about nothing.

    To spot the expert, pick the one who predicts the job will take
    the longest and cost the most.

    The least experienced fisherman always catches the biggest

Leadership and management

    The first myth of management is that it exists.

    Anyone can make a decision given enough facts. A good manager
    can make a decision without enough facts. A perfect manager can
    operate in perfect ignorance.

    The compromise will always be more expensive than either of the
    suggestions it is compromising.


    If there is a way to delay an important decision, the good
    bureaucracy, public or private, will find it.

    If an idea can survive a bureaucratic review and be
    implemented, it wasn't worth doing.

Companies and hierarchy

    Posameznik pleza po kadrovski lestvici, dokler ne doseže
    svojega nivoja nesposobnosti.

    Sčasoma bo vsako mesto v kadrovski piramidi zasedeno s
    človekom, ki je za to mesto nesposoben.

    Delo opravljajo tisti, ki še niso dosegli svojega nivoja

    In any human enterprise, work seeks the lowest hierarchical

    Nobody really knows what is going on anywhere within the


    The sum of the intelligence on the planet is a constant; the
    population is growing.

    In crises that force people to choose among alternative courses
    of action, most people will choose the worst one possible.

    Men and nations will act rationally when all other
    possibilities have been exhausted.

    When people are free to do as they please, they usually imitate
    each other.

    No matter what they're telling you, they're not telling you the
    whole truth.

    No matter what they're talking about, they're taking about

    Nobody really cares or understands what anyone else is doing.

    Everybody lies; but it doesn't matter since nobody listens.

    Friends come and go, but enemies accumulate.


    Any order that can be misunderstood has been misunderstood.

Law and lawyers

    The number of laws will expand to fill the publishing space

    A proliferation of new laws creates a proliferation of new

    No man's life, liberty, or property are safe while legislature
    is in session.

Medicine and doctors

    A drug is that substance which, when injected into a rat, will
    produce a scientific report.

    Just because your doctor has a name for your condition doesn't
    mean he knows what it is.

    An alcoholic is a person who drinks more than his own

    The severity of the itch is inversely proportional to the

School and teachers

    The more general the title of a course, the less you will learn
    from it. The more specific a title is, the less you will be
    able to apply it later.

    Class schedules are designed so that every student will waste
    the maximum time between classes.

    Every instructor assumes that you have nothing else to do
    except study for that instructor's course.

Home life

    Expenditures rise to meet income.

    In order to get a loan you must first prove you don't need it.

    Possessions increase to fill the space available for their

    If you keep anything long enough, you can throw it away. If you
    throw it away, you will need it the next day.

    You can always find what you're not looking for.

    The first place to look for anything is the last place you
    would expect to find it.

    You always find something the last place you look.

    If there are only two shows on TV worth watching this week,
    they will be on at the same time.

    In order for something to become clean, something else must
    become dirty; but you can get everything dirty without getting
    anything clean.

    Washing machines only break down during the wash cycle.

    A clean tie attracts the soup of the day.

    The chance of the bread falling with the buttered side down is
    directly proportional to the cost of the carpet.

    How long a minute is depends on which side of the bathroom door
    you're on.

    The length of a marriage is inversely proportional to the
    amount spent on the wedding.

    It's always the partner's fault.

    The one who snores will fall asleep first.

    One child is not enough, but two are far too many.

    A child will not spill on a dirty floor.

    An unbreakable toy is useful for breaking other toys.

    No matter which side of the door the cat or dog is on, it is
    the wrong side.

    The probability of meeting someone you know increases when you
    are with someone you don't want to be seen with.

    Opportunity always knocks at the least oppertune moment.

    If you're feeling good, don't worry; yoüll get over it.


    You get the most of what you need the least.

    You never want the one you can afford.

    The label NEW and/or IMPROVED means the price went up.

    If it says "one size fits all", it doesn't fit anyone.

    If you like it, they don't have it in your size.

    If the shoe fits, it's ugly.

    No matter how hard you shop for an item, after you bougt it,
    you will find it on sale.

    The other line is always faster.

    The longer you wait in line, the greater likelihood that you
    are standing in the wrong line.

    The one item you want is never the one on sale.


    Take half as much clothing and twice as much money.

    All trails have more uphill sections than they have level or
    downhill sections.

    No matter which way you ride, it's uphill and against the wind.

    The mountain look closer than it is.

    The mountain gets steeper as you get closer.

    When it rains, it pours.

    If you're early, it's cancelled, if you are on time, it's late,
    if you're late, you're late.