Law of Mechanical Repair – After your hands become coated with grease, your nose will begin to itch and you’ll have to pee.
Law of Gravity – Any tool, nut, bolt, screw, when dropped, will roll to the least accessible corner.
Law of Probability -The probability of being watched is directly proportional to the stupidity of your act.
Law of Random Numbers – If you dial a wrong number, you never get a busy signal and someone always answers.
Law of the Alibi – If you tell the boss you were late for work because you had a flat tire, the very next morning you will have a flat tire.
Variation Law – If you change lines (or traffic lanes), the one you were in will always move faster than the one you are in now (works every time).
Law of the Bath – When the body is fully immersed in water, the telephone rings.
Law of Close Encounters -The probability of meeting someone you know increases dramatically when you are with someone you don’t want to be seen with.
Law of the Result – When you try to prove to someone that a machine won’t work, it will..
Law of Biomechanics – The severity of the itch is inversely proportional to the reach.
Law of the Theater and Hockey Arena – At any event, the people whose seats are furthest from the aisle arrive last and they are the ones who will leave their seats several times to go for food, beer, or the toilet and who leave early before the end of the performance or the game is over. While those in the aisle seats come early, never move once, have long gangly legs or big bellies and who stay to the bitter end of the performance and beyond. The aisle people also are very surly folk.
The Starbucks 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.
Murphy’s Law of Lockers – If there are only two people in a locker room, they will have adjacent lockers.
Law of Logical Argument – Anything is possible if you don’t know what you are talking about.
Wilson’s Law of Commercial Marketing Strategy – As soon as you find a product that you really like, they will stop making it.
Doctors’ Law – If you don’t feel well, make an appointment to go to the doctor, by the time you get there you’ll feel better. Don’t make an appointment and you’ll stay sick.
This actually did happen to a real person, and the real person was me. I had gone to catch a train. This was April 1976, in Cambridge, U.K. I was a bit early for the train. I’d gotten the time of the train wrong.
I went to get myself a newspaper to do the crossword, and a cup of coffee and a packet of cookies. I went and sat at a table.
I want you to picture the scene. It’s very important that you get this very clear in your mind.
Here’s the table, newspaper, cup of coffee, packet of cookies. There’s a guy sitting opposite me, perfectly ordinary-looking guy wearing a business suit, carrying a briefcase.
It didn’t look like he was going to do anything weird. What he did was this: he suddenly leaned across, picked up the packet of cookies, tore it open, took one out, and ate it.
Now this, I have to say, is the sort of thing the British are very bad at dealing with. There’s nothing in our background, upbringing, or education that teaches you how to deal with someone who in broad daylight has just stolen your cookies.
You know what would happen if this had been South Central Los Angeles. There would have very quickly been gunfire, helicopters coming in, CNN, you know. . . But in the end, I did what any red-blooded Englishman would do: I ignored it. And I stared at the newspaper, took a sip of coffee, tried to do a clue in the newspaper, couldn’t do anything, and thought, what am I going to do?
In the end I thought, nothing for it, I’ll just have to go for it, and I tried very hard not to notice the fact that the packet was already mysteriously opened. I took out a cookie for myself. I thought, that settled him. But it hadn’t because a moment or two later he did it again. He took another cookie.
Having not mentioned it the first time, it was somehow even harder to raise the subject the second time around. “Excuse me, I couldn’t help but notice . . .” I mean, it doesn’t really work.
We went through the whole packet like this. When I say the whole packet, I mean there were only about eight cookies, but it felt like a lifetime. He took one, I took one, he took one, I took one. Finally, when we got to the end, he stood up and walked away.
Well, we exchanged meaningful looks, then he walked away, and I breathed a sigh of relief and sat back. A moment or two later the train was coming in, so I tossed back the rest of my coffee, stood up, picked up the newspaper, and underneath the newspaper were my cookies.
The thing I like particularly about this story is the sensation that somewhere in England there has been wandering around for the last quarter-century a perfectly ordinary guy who’s had the same exact story, only he doesn’t have the punch line.
(Excerpted from “The Salmon of Doubt: Hitchhiking the Galaxy One Last Time” by Douglas Adams)