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PoiPoi's avatar

What is Murphy's Law and do you believe in Murphy's Law?

Asked by PoiPoi (274points) June 18th, 2008

The only thing I know is that Murphy’s Law has a phrase that explains the meaning of it: “Anything that goes wrong, will go wrong.” But really what is it? Is it a theory, a type of philosophy, an idiom, a proverb, or is it really a law? Is it actually named after a guy called Murphy? And do you believe the principles of Murphy’s Law makes sense to real life experience?

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4 Answers

marinelife's avatar

Yes, there as a Murphy. Here is the story of the origin.

“It was named after Capt. Edward A. Murphy, an engineer working on Air Force Project MX981, (a project) designed to see how much sudden deceleration a person can stand in a crash.

One day, after finding that a transducer was wired wrong, he cursed the technician responsible and said, “If there is any way to do it wrong, he’ll find it.”

The contractor’s project manager kept a list of “laws” and added this one, which he called Murphy’s Law.

Actually, what he did was take an old law that had been around for years in a more basic form and give it a name.”

As to real life, sometimes it sure seems that way, but I think we just noice it when it does.

wildflower's avatar

You should prepare for the worst and hope for the best. Meaning believe Murphy’s Law could apply, but hope that it doesn’t.

Knotmyday's avatar

The version that I heard was “anything that can go wrong, will go wrong.”
My optimistic version is “Here goes! Hope nothing goes wrong!”
But that’s just the chipper chap I am.

ebenezer's avatar

I don’t think we would be here if murphy’s law was reliable. Although I have heard knotmyday’s explanation most, I think marina’s must be the heart of the law… Self affacing and clever and more about the fallibility of humans and air force mechanics.

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