Published on July 1st, 2018 | by Ann Rickard


Murphy’s Law

What’s the go with Murphy’s Law? It’s a pesky thing which means ‘what can go wrong will go wrong’ but I apply it to just about everything that happens to annoy me. Every small irritant in my life brings out a curse followed by a cry of ‘Murphy’s Law at it again.’

Here’s an example. I needed to buy two birthday cards recently, one for my mother (99 years old, pretty good, hey?) and one for my five-year-old granddaughter (hopefully she will get to 99 one day.)

First the Mother card. Into the newsagent, go to the rack of hundreds of cards where there were sections for just about every species on the planet – from the obvious: Male, Female, Son, Daughter, Father, Uncle, Aunty, Nephew, Grandmother, Grandniece (yes, not kidding), Great Grandmother.

“Where’s the Mother?” I cursed under the breath and kept looking. Surely it should be near the Father, but no. It skipped from Father to Mother-in-Law to Person Nobody Cares About.

I searched that rack of cards for a good 30 minutes becoming more determined by the minute to find Mother. But alas, no Mother in sight. I had to settle for a generic card and move on to the five-year old.

Of course, there was Murphy lurking in-wait to trip me up again. I found the age birthdays easily, cast my eye down the 1, 2, 3, 4…and then it jumped to 6. There it was, a dirty big gap where 5 should have been.

“Murphy’s Law again,” I shouted much to the fright of everyone in the shop.

How could it be? Of all the hundreds of cards in-store, I wanted only two, a Mother and a Five, and there they were…not.

I realise this is a trivial example of stuff going wrong and blaming Murphy, and worse, me thinking I am the only person in the world this happens to. But these small annoyances are real. Like co-incidences.

One co-incidence that occurs to me at an airport every single time – and I do not exaggerate – is being stopped by the person with the wand-stick-thingie looking for explosive residue on your person. Every time. One hundred percent. I spy the person with the wand just outside security and keep my head down, gather my things once through, and try to look insignificant (not

always possible when you are a big-boned woman) and pray someone else will get stopped before me so I can slip past quickly. Never ever happens.

I often push my husband through first, so he might get stopped, but they ignore him and pounce on me. Fortunately, I’m not into gunpowder or explosive materials so it is never a problem. The security person always begins an explanation about what he/she is going to do, and I say, ‘yes, been there, done that, many times’ and we get it over and done with quickly.

But the co-incidence? If I was to buy a Tattslotto ticket on the strength of this, of course I wouldn’t win. Murphy would ensure that.

On reading this, you are probably thinking, ‘that happens to me’ and you would be right. I think co-incidence is not really an innocent thing, it has something to do with the way the world tilts and turns…and Murphy lying in wait for all of us.


About the Author

is a Noosa (Australia) local and author of six successful books, all humorous travel narratives. In 2005 Ann won the prestigious ASTW’s Australian Travel Writer of the Year and in 2007 she won the ASTW Travel Book of the Year. Ann takes a culinary tour to the South of France in June every year . Ann writes travel, dining and columns for the Sunshine Coast Daily and is the Life editor of the Noosa News. Ann also maintains a well read and popular blog site. Ann’s travels have seen her explore cuisines all over the world.

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