Murphy’s Law/La Ley de Murphy

I am not an optimist by nature. I sometimes think this must be related to my family name, and its association with Murphy’s Law, i.e., the adage often stated as “If anything can go wrong, it will.” What you may not know is that Murphy’s Original Law is actually “If there are two or more ways to do something, and one of those ways can result in a catastrophe, then someone will do it.” This is followed by Murphy’s First Corollary (“Left to themselves, things tend to go from bad to worse”), Murphy’s Second Corollary (“It is impossible to make anything foolproof because fools are so ingenious”), the Quantized Revision of Murphy’s Law (“Everything goes wrong all at once”), and Murphy’s Constant (“Matter will be damaged in direct proportion to its value”). Really, with a family name like mine, how could I be anything but a pessimist?

Naturally, from time to time during the course of my Spanish studies, I’ve wondered if there is a Spanish equivalent of Murphy’s Law. I may have stumbled upon a possible candidate. If you translate “Éramos pocos y parió la abuela” word for word, it just sounds like gibberish: “We were few and the grandmother gave birth.” But from what I have read, this saying expresses the idea, “Just when you thought things couldn’t get any worse, it does.” Perhaps a Spanish-speaking reader will comment on the accuracy of this translation.

No soy optimista por naturaleza. Quizás mi apellido tiene la culpa. Hay una expresión en inglés llamada La Ley de Murphy que expone “Si algo puede salir mal, saldrá mal”. Contiene también el sentido “Si además puede empeorar, lo hará”. Me preguntaba si existe un dicho equivalente español. Según otro blog de WordPress, “Éramos pocos y parió la abuela” es una expresión apropiada para utilizar cuando todo lo malo que podía pasar sucede y encima llega algo peor. Creo que este expresión va a ser muy útil.

One response to “Murphy’s Law/La Ley de Murphy

  1. Pingback: A Wonderful Spanish Idiom/Una Familia Muy Agradable | Un Poco Quisquillosa

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