Dec 062017

Saying And Aphorisms

Abbott’s Admonitions:

1) If you have to ask, you’re not entitled to know.

2) If you don’t like the answer, you shouldn’t have asked the question.

Abrams’s Advice:

When eating an elephant, take one bite at a time.

Rule of Accuracy:

When working toward the solution of a problem, it always helps if you know the answer.


Provided, of course, that you know there is a problem.

Acheson’s Rule of the Bureaucracy:

A memorandum is written not to inform the reader but to protect the writer.

Acton’s Law:

Power tends to corrupt; absolute power corrupts absolutely.

Ade’s Law:

Anybody can win — unless there happens to be a second entry.

Airplane Law:

When the plane you are on is late, the plane you want to transfer to is on time.

Albrecht’s Law:

Social innovations tend to the level of minimum tolerable well being.

Algren’s Precepts:

Never eat at a place called Mom’s. Never play cards with a man named Doc. And never have sex with a woman who’s got more troubles than you.

Allen’s Law of Civilization:

It is better for civilization to be going down the drain than to be coming up it.

Agnes Allen’s Law:

Almost anything is easier to get into than out of.

Fred Allen’s Motto:

I’d rather have a free bottle in front of me than a prefrontal lobotomy.

Alley’s Axiom:

Justice always prevails … three times out of seven.

Alligator Allegory:

The objective of all dedicated product support employees should be to thoroughly analyze all situations, anticipate all problems prior to their occurrence, have answers for these problems, and move swiftly to solve these problems when called upon. However, when you are up to your ass in alligators, it is difficult to remind yourself that your initial objective was to drain the swamp.

Allison’s Precept:

The best simple-minded test of experience in a particular area is the ability to win money in a series of bets on future occurrences in that area.

Anderson’s Law:

I have yet to see any problem, however complicated, which, when you looked at it in the right way, did not become still more complicated.

Andrews’s Canoeing Postulate:

No matter which direction you start it’s always against the wind coming back.

Law of Annoyance:

When working on a project, if you put away a tool that you’re certain you’re finished with, you will need it instantly.

Anthony’s Law of Force:

Don’t force it, get a larger hammer.

Anthony’s Law of the Workshop:

Any tool, when dropped, will roll into the least accessible corner of the workshop. Corollary: On the way to the corner, any dropped tool will first always strike your toes.

Laws of Applied Confusion:

1) The one piece that the plant forgot to ship is the one that supports 75% of the balance of the shipment.


Not only did the plant forget to ship it, 50% of the time they haven’t even made it.

2) Truck deliveries that normally take one day will take five when you are waiting for the truck.

3) After adding two weeks to the schedule for unexpected delays, add two more for the unexpected, unexpected delays.

4) In any structure, pick out the one piece that should not be mismarked and expect the plant to cross you up.


1) In any group of pieces with the same erection mark on it, one should not have that mark on it.

2) It will not be discovered until you try to put it where the mark says it’s supposed to go.

3) Never argue with the fabricating plant about an error. The inspection prints are all checked off, even to the holes that aren’t there.

Approval Seeker’s Law:

Those whose approval you seek the most give you the least.

Army Axiom:

Any order that can be misunderstood has been misunderstood.

Navy Law:

If it moves, salute it; if it doesn’t move, pick it up; if you can’t pick it up, paint it.

Ashley-Perry Statistical Axioms:

1) Numbers are tools, not rules.

2) Numbers are symbols for things; the number and the thing are not the same.

3) Skill in manipulating numbers is a talent, not evidence of divine guidance.

4) Like other occult techniques of divination, the statistical method has a private jargon deliberately contrived to obscure its methods from nonpractitioners.

5) The product of an arithmetical computation is the answer to an equation; it is not the solution to a problem.

6) Arithmetical proofs of theorems that do not have arithmetical bases prove nothing.

Astrology Law: It’s always the wrong time of the month.
Fourteenth Corollary of Atwood’s General Law of Dynamic Negatives:

No books are lost by loaning except those you particularly wanted to keep.

Avery’s Rule of Three:

Trouble strikes in series of threes, but when working around the house the next job after a series of three is not the fourth job — it’s the start of a brand new series of three.