24 October 2005
I don't even remember where I first found this, but it's am almost canonical list of all the "laws" (like "Murphy's Law"), famous and obscure, that have been kicked around:
Agnes Allen's Law: Almost anything is easier to get into than out of.
Army Laws: If it moves, salute it. If it doesn't move, pick it up. If you can't pick it up, paint it.
Barth's Distinction: There are two types of people: those who divide people into two types, and those who don't.
Bartz's Law of Hokey Horsepuckery: The more ridiculous a belief system, the higher the probability of its success.
Baruch's Rule for Determining Old Age: Old age is always fifteen years older than I am.
Basic Law of Construction: Cut it large and kick it into place.
Becker's Law: It is much harder to find a job than to keep one.
Benchley's Law: Anyone can do any amount of work, provided it isn't the work he is supposed to be doing at that moment.
Berra's Law: You can observe a lot just by watching.
Bicycle Law: All bicycles weigh 50 pounds: A 30-pound bicycle needs a 20-pound lock and chain. A 40-pound bicycle needs a 10-pound lock and chain. A 50-pound bicycle needs no lock or chain.
Boling's Postulate: If you're feeling good, don't worry. You'll get over it.
Bombeck's Rule of Medicine: Never go to a doctor whose office plants have died.
Boren's Laws of the Bureaucracy: 1. When in doubt, mumble. 2. When in trouble, delegate. 3. When in charge, ponder.
Borstelmann's Rule: If everything seems to be coming your way, you're probably in the wrong lane.
Bralek's Rule for Success: Trust only those who stand to lose as much as you do when things go wrong.
Brien's First Law: At some time in the life cycle of virtually every organization, its ability to succeed in spite of itself runs out.
Cannon's Comment: 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.
Captain Penny's Law: You can fool all of the people some of the time, and some of the people all of the time, but you can't fool MOM.
Cardinal Conundrum: An optimist believes we live in the best of all possible worlds. A pessimist fears this is true.
Character and Appearance Law: People don't change; they only become more so.
Clarke's Law of Revolutionary Ideas: Every revolutionary idea -- in Science, Politics, Art or Whatever -- evokes three stages of reaction. They may be summed up by the three phrases: 1. “It is completely impossible -- don't waste my time.” 2. “It is possible, but it is not worth doing.” 3. “I said it was a good idea all along.”
Clarke's Third Law: Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.
Cleveland's Highway Law: Highways in the worst need of repair naturally have low traffic counts, which results in low priority for repair work.
Clyde's Law: If you have something to do, and you put it off long enough, chances are someone else will do it for you.
Cohen's Law of Wisdom: Wisdom is considered a sign of weakness by the powerful because a wise man can lead without power but only a powerful man can lead without wisdom.
Cole's Axiom: The sum of the intelligence on the planet is a constant; the population is growing.
Cole's Law: Thinly sliced cabbage.
Colvard's Logical Premise: All probabilities are 50%. Either a thing will happen, or it won't.
Commoner's Three Laws of Ecology: 1. No action is without side-effects. 2. Nothing ever goes away. 3. There is no free lunch.
Cooper's Law: All machines are amplifiers.
Dieter's Law: The food that tastes the best has the highest number of calories.
Displaced Hassle Principle: To beat the bureaucracy, make your problem their problem.
Ducharm's Axiom: If you view your problem closely enough, you will recognize yourself as part of the problem.
Dykstra's Law: Everybody is somebody else's weirdo.
Edelstein's Advice: Don't worry over what other people are thinking about you. They're too busy worrying over what you are thinking about them.
Ehrlich's Rule: The first rule of intelligent tinkering is to save all the parts.
Ettorre's Observation: The other line moves faster. Corollary: Don't try to change lines. The other line -- the one you were in originally -- will then move faster.
Farber's Third Law: We're all going down the same road in different directions
Finagle's Laws of Information: 1. The information you have is not what you want. 2. The information you want is not what you need. 3. The information you need is not what you can obtain. 4. The information you can obtain costs more than you want to pay.
Finnigan's Law: The farther away the future is, the better it looks.
(more in the next issue)
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