http://www.hardlined.com/murphy.txt

Some of my favorites:

Ade’s Law
Anybody can win — unless there happens to be a second entry.
Law of Algebra
You never catch on until after the test.
Allen’s Axiom
When all else fails, follow instructions.

Cartoon Laws
1.Any body suspended in space will remain in space until made aware of its situation. Daffy Duck
steps off a cliff, expecting further pastureland. He loiters in midair, soliloquizing flippantly, until he
chances to look down. At this point, the familiar principle of 32 feet per second per second takes
over.
2.Any body in motion will tend to remain in motion until solid matter intervenes suddenly. Whether shot
from a cannon or in hot pursuit on foot, cartoon characters are so absolute in their momentum that
only a telephone pole or an outsize boulder retards their forward motion absolutely. Sir Isaac
Newton called this sudden termination of motion the stooge’s surcease.
3.Any body passing through solid matter will leave a perforation conforming to its perimeter. Also
called the silhouette of passage, this phenomenon is the speciality of victims of directed-pressure
explosions and of reckless cowards who are so eager to escape that they exit directly through the
wall of a house, leaving a cookie-cutout- perfect hole. The threat of skunks or matrimony often
catalyzes this reaction.
4.The time required for an object to fall twenty stories is greater than or equal to the time it takes for
whoever knocked it off the ledge to spiral down twenty flights to attempt to capture it unbroken. Such
an object is inevitably priceless, the attempt to capture it inevitably unsuccessful.
5.All principles of gravity are negated by fear. Psychic forces are sufficient in most bodies for a shock
to propel them directly away from the earth’s surface. A spooky noise or an adversary’s signature
sound will induce motion upward, usually to the cradle of a chandelier, a treetop, or the crest of a
flagpole. The feet of a character who is running or the wheels of a speeding auto need never touch
the ground, especially when in flight.
6.As speed increases, objects can be in several places at once. This is particularly true of
tooth-and-claw fights, in which a character’s head may be glimpsed emerging from the cloud of
altercation at several places simultaneously. This effect is common as well among bodies that are
spinning or being throttled. A ‘wacky’ character has the option of self- replication only at manic high
speeds and may ricochet off walls to achieve the velocity required.
7.Certain bodies can pass through solid walls painted to resemble tunnel entrances; others cannot.
This trompe l’oeil inconsistency has baffled generation, but at least it is known that whoever paints
an entrance on a wall’s surface to trick an opponent will be unable to pursue him into this theoretical
space. The painter is flattened against the wall when he attempts to follow into the painting. This is
ultimately a problem of art, not of science.
8.Any violent rearrangement of feline matter is impermanent. Cartoon cats possess even more
deaths than the traditional nine lives might comfortably afford. They can be decimated, spliced,
splayed, accordion-pleated, spindled, or disassembled, but they cannot be destroyed. After a few
moments of blinking self pity, they reinflate, elongate, snap back, or solidify.
Corollary – A cat will assume the shape of its container.
9.For every vengeance there is an equal and opposite revengeance. This is the one law of animated
cartoon motion that also applies to the physical world at large. For that reason, we need the relief of
watching it happen to a duck instead.
10.Everything falls faster than an anvil. Examples too numerous to mention from the Roadrunner
cartoons.