# Murphy’s Laws for Mathematics

I was finally catching up on some blog reading today (Yes, I should be finishing the grading of my Differential Equations tests, but I was kind of cranky this morning for no apparent reason. I’m sure my students would prefer me to be in a good mood before I start grading)

While reading the Carnival of Mathematics over at Walking Randomly, I was pointed in the direction of "Murphy’s Laws for Mathematics".  I’m sure just about everyone knows the fundamental principle called Murphy’s Law:

• Murphy’s Law: If anything can go wrong, it will.
• Corollary 1: At the worst possible time
• Corollary 2: Causing the most damage
• Over at the site, Murphy’s Laws and Mathematics, we see how that works itself out in a mathematics course.  Here are a few of my favorites:

• Every problem is harder than it looks and takes longer than you expected.
• Notes you understood perfectly in class transform themselves into hieroglyphics at home.
• The answers you need aren’t in the back of the book.
• No matter how much you study for exams, it will never be enough.
• The problems you can work are never put on the exam.
• The problems you are certain won’t be on the test will be.
• The answer to the problem you couldn’t work on the exam will become obvious after you hand in your paper.