Murphy’s Laws of Home Work

Here are a few Murphy’s Laws I’ve discovered while doing my architectural restoration work (website:

1.  Concerning Dropcloths.

The drips will drop where the dropcloth ain’t.

2.  Concerning the Cleaning of Window Glass.

The smudge you see is always on the other side.

Corollary:  The smudge you don’t see is on the side  you are now cleaning.  But you won’t see it until you turn the glass over to clean the other side.

3.  Concerning Sun Glare.

No matter what side of the building you are on, if the sun is shining and you are working on a window, it will be in your eyes.

4.  Concerning Work Surfaces.

No matter how many horizontal surfaces you have, you will never find a clear space on which to set something down in the middle of a project.

5.  Concerning Tool Retrieval.

If you go down to the basement to retrieve a tube of caulk from your workbench, you will come back with sandpaper, blue tape, a roller cover…but not the tube of caulk.

6.  Concerning Putting Things Away.

Nothing will ensure your need for some material or tool more than having thought you were done with it and having put it away.

7.  Concerning Project Entropy.

A project that has gone bad will want to keep going in the same direction, from bad to worse to nightmare.

8.  Concerning Small Projects.

The smaller the project, the more it will exceed the time you thought it would take.

9.  Concerning Dropped Screws.

They will fall further away from you than you ever could have ever imagined they could fall.

10.  Concerning the End of the Project.

The closer you get to it, the further it will recede from you.

11.  Concerning Repetitive Tasks.

Let’s say you are cleaning a pile of panes of glass.  When there are three left to                  clean, you could have sworn there were two.  When there are two left to clean, you            could have sworn there was one.  When there is one left to clean, you still have to            clean it.

12.  [Not One of Murphy’s Laws…But a Good Thing to Remember]

Especially when working on irreplaceable antiques, you only get one chance to break it,

but you get a lot of chances NOT to break it.


Jeffrey Ediger   Copyright  ©  2011

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