Murphy laws cover rain, taxes, death

People know when to die. Or at least six of them do.

Art and photo Ryn Gargulinski

Art and photo Ryn Gargulinski

Six folks died this past week – as many as in the previous three weeks – because I was on furlough. This means I would not get to update the Day of the Dead blog promptly and would have a morbid first day back listing all the deaths.

In addition to the five deaths, my inbox contained announcements of a motorcyclist with life-threatening injuries and two hikers already lost for days in the Grand Canyon.

Call it life’s little ironies, bad timing, or use the more common term: Murphy’s Law.

The original Murphy’s Law, which says “If something can go wrong, it will,” came about from, you guessed it, a guy named Murphy.

Dang Murphy.

A synopsis of its origin is noted at Clear Lead Inc.:

Murphy’s Law, as it has come to be known, took root at the Edwards Air Force Base in 1949. Captain Edward A. Murphy was an engineer working on a project that measured how much sudden deceleration a person could stand in the event of a crash. This project was USAF project MX981 – the test for human acceleration tolerances. One of the experiments needed a set of 16 accelerometers to be mounted to different parts of the subject’s body. This could be done in two ways.

As was expected, the person involved had glued all the parts the wrong way around. This caused Capt. Murphy to utter “If it could be done wrong, in all probability it would.”

The Air Force doctor, Dr. John Paul Stapp later gave a press conference to the effect that the safety record on this project was largely due to the belief in Murphy’s Law and stringent steps being undertaken to circumvent it.

The site also noted six more Murphy laws, which continue to crop up like crab grass:

1. If something can go wrong, it will.
2. If anything simply cannot go wrong, it will anyway.
3. Left to themselves, things tend to go from bad to worse.
4. Matter is damaged in direct proportion to its value.
5. The chance of the bread falling buttered side down is directly proportional to the cost of the carpet.
6. The opulence of the front office décor is inversely proportional to the fundamental solvency of the company.
7. Tell a man that there are 250 billion stars in the universe and chances are that he will believe you. But try telling him that the bench has wet paint and he will touch to be sure.

Illustration Ryn Gargulinski

Illustration Ryn Gargulinski

Murphy’s laws kick into play in subtle ways every day, with special attention given to some major areas.

These laws definitely dictate the weather. Know it will invariably rain on certain days – like right after you wash your car. Never mind that you’ve lived in a dust-covered auto for six months or the forecast called for sun, sun, sun. Raindrops will pelt your newly polished fenders and streak down your windshield.

Rain also likes to hit right after we paint our house, the one day of the year we dig out all our crap to have a yard sale and on the day we finally decide to wear our new suede jacket. Count on it.

Murphy’s Law also works in conjunction with major department stores to ensure large items will go on sale the day after we buy them. This not only applies to suede jackets but to expensive electronics, like camcorders and big screen TVs. It will also rain during the TV delivery.

The laws have a way of toying around with taxes. After struggling for no fewer than 10 hours through my tax return, as I had no money to hire someone to do them for me, I finally got them done. Most of my time was spent looking up rules, regulations and strange formulas that involved lots of multiplication to deduct items to which I was entitled.

It’s been days and my headache is barely subsiding.

Would you know the very next day every other headline online and in those magazines I got sucked into subscriptions for said something about taxes.

“Five Overlooked Deductions,” “10 Most Common Tax Mistakes,” “Three Ways to Make Tax Time Easier,” “How to Calculate Deductions without Strange Formulas that Involve Lots of Multiplication.”

Sigh. Of course, when I went to buy an extra large bottle of incredibly expensive pain reliever to quell my headache, it went on sale the very next day.


wb-logolilWhat do you think?

When was the last time you were plagued with a Murphy law?

Which of Murphy’s laws hits you most often?

Did your big screen TV get delivered in the rain?

What’s your favorite Murphy law? I like the buttered bread one myself.


About Rynski

Writer, artist, performer who specializes in the weird, wacky and sometimes creepy. Learn more at
This entry was posted in danger, environment, gross stuff, life, Police/fire/law and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

18 Responses to Murphy laws cover rain, taxes, death

  1. radmax says:

    Mornin’ Rynski! Nice to have you back. The site just isn’t quite as as fun in your absence.
    Re: Murphy’s Law- if you take it for granted that any endeavor will be futile due to yours or others screw-ups, you will never be disappointed. 😉
    Nice way to be pleasantly surprised in the rare event of a task going exactly as planned.

    • Rynski says:

      hiya radmax!
      thanks for welcome back – and fine compliment! nice to see your grinning skull, too.
      your murphy law sounds like cynical law – hahha. and one that yes, will keep you non-disappointed but i daresay somewhat depressed…kind of like lowering your expectations to never be disappointed. or expecting to have a crappy day and never being disappointed – or knowing you’ll step in dog doo in a brand new pair of shoes.
      have a nice day! hahahhahaha

      • radmax says:

        Depressed Rynski? What on earth could be depressing? Taxes? Obama-care? The economy? Waiting two hours for your meal after ordering, until your stomach starts to consume itself from starvation? Or when your food finally arrives, some lout begins to laugh in a piercing staccato like a rabid hyena, so as to chase all semblance of a pleasant evening from the realm of possibility? (this actually happened to us on a dinner date Saturday night!) Don’t worry, be happy! 😉

      • Rynski says:

        hahahha! LOUT is a very good word – but not a good thing to have blasting a laugh during dinner. wow. where did you eat? mcdonald’s hahahahaha.
        rabid hyena is a good image, too. i picture hyenas always standing around in a circle cackling.
        thanks for the laugh. and i decided i’m not going to be depressed today since azmouse said (see below). so heck with taxes, economy and all that pukey stuff. now on to the dead…

  2. azmouse says:

    Missed ya, Ryn! But I got allot accomplished last week in your absence, I must admit! LOL

    I scoff at Murphy’s Law!

    My day, life, and moments are what I make them, and I make them wonderful! If I hit a bump in the road in the course of a day, it’s just a bump. If washing my car makes it rain, I love the rain!

    • Rynski says:

      hiya azmouse! missed you, too and thanks!
      glad to hear you got a lot done…but i hope taxes were not on your agenda – or if they were, i hope you did them AFTER all those helpful articles came out. hahaha.
      thanks, too, for sharing your take on murphy’s law. i need that inspiration today – and the refreshing attitude. i must admit, mine has been crap-o-la-ey lately.
      but you’re absolutely right – the power of positive thinking can do wonders. …and i can always just stop washing my car altogether so i can scoff at the murphy rain law, too -hahaha.

      • azmouse says:

        I know it’s hard sometimes but I really do try to live day to day. Each day will never, ever happen again. Today will be a part of history tomorrow.

        As far as taxes, I like doing my own, plus I’ve had at least one dependant for the last almost twenty five years, so it’s money in the bank!   🙂

      • Rynski says:

        i need such thoughts hanging from my bathroom mirror! hahaha.
        glad you enjoy taxes – think mine are so taxing, excuse the pun, because 1.) i always have to pay and 2.) this was my first time attempting them on my own and it was a whole new putrid mystery.
        good for you on money in the bank! when can i claim my dogs, rats and lazlo as dependents? hahahah

      • azmouse says:

        This is my last year with a dependant, so maybe I won’t be so happy next year!??!

        I agree, pets should be dependants!
        Well, good for you for doing them yourself. It is an interesting process.

      • Rynski says:

        thanks, az – yes! it is VERY interesting, i’ll give ya that.
        it not only challenges math skills, which i think i left back in high school algebra, but it tests endurance, strength and the ability to read fine print without going blind – hahahha.

      • azmouse says:

        I’m with you on the math skills!

  3. Andrew Ulanowski says:

    Ryn! Glad to see you back hunny bunny!

  4. tiponeill says:

    Welcome back.
    P.S. Murphy was an optimist 😉

    • Rynski says:

      thanks, tip.
      …and that’s some scary optimism for murphy…i’ll bet he’s behind that snafu phrase, too, haha.

      • koreyk says:

        Close.   SNAFU originated in the Army during WWII, although the original author remains unknown.  Don’t forget FUBAR, or the lesser known TARFU.

      • Rynski says:

        thanks for info, koreyk.
        military acronyms are fun – and soooo on the mark in soooo many situations – hahah.

  5. Jennatoolz says:

    Yayyyy Ryn’s back! Time to celebrate! 😀
    Murphy’s Law is a bummer at times…but I, like azmouse, try to live day to day. It keeps me on my toes and ready for anything! 😉

    As for taxes…I’ve done them myself in the past using online things like Turbotax and whatnot. However, my grandparents own a tax business, cleverly called We Do Taxes, up in Phoenix. I ended up emailing them all my info and my dad did it for me, haha. I hear he’s going to take their business over soon, and I figured he could use the practice. Win-win all around!

  6. Ferraribubba says:

    Welcome back Rynski: Snafu was an American phrase during WW2. The Germans had their own, and it was fubar.
    Yer pal, Kubelwagen Bubba

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