The grass may not be quite green yet, but on March 17th, GREEN rules – in everything from green beer to green hair. Ah, yes me lassies and laddies, ‘tis time again for ye olde St. Paddie’s Day – when everybody’s Irish. Faith and Begora!

In honor of this special day in March, we honor many old Irish traditions, like the wearin’ of the green, the St. Patrick’s Day Parade, eating Corned Beef and Cabbage, drinking Guinness, and of course, the Shamrock.

There’s another Irish tradition, the old curse of Murphy’s law, "If anything can go wrong, it will go wrong."

The origin of Murphy’s Law goes back to a Col. John Paul Stapp, an Air Force medical researcher who rode a rocket-powered sled at a speed faster than a .45-caliber bullet in an experiment to test the limits of human endurance. And though that speed has since been surpassed, it was impressive for its day, and he became an immediate celebrity. The New York Herald Tribune called him "A gentleman who can stop on a dime and give you 10 cents change."

But he won what will perhaps be even more lasting fame in a speed test some five years earlier, when he suffered injuries owing to a mistake by an assistant to one Captain Edward J. Murphy, an engineer at what is now Edwards Air Force Base in California.

Murphy was working on a project to test the effects of sudden braking, and time after time his machinery failed. Exasperated, he

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said of his technician, "If there is any way to do it wrong, he'll find it." Stapp picked up on Murphy's phrase and used it at a press conference. It became known as Murphy’s Law, and the rest is history.

Looking for some examples of Murphy’s law, I came up with a few we’re all too familiar with:

Your lost needle will be found by your husband when he is walking around barefoot. (My Dearly Beloved always panics when he sees me poking straight pins or needles in the arm of the couch while I’m sitting there multi-tasking – sewing and watching TV.)

Uniforms only come in two sizes, too large and too small. (This also applies to hospital gowns, which can sometimes cause a bit of embarrassment – and I speak from experience!)

In order to get a bank loan, you must first prove that you don't need the money. (Like everybody has enough money to pay cash for a house but they’d rather keep it in the bank and draw a whopping half percent interest – if you’re lucky enough to get even that much.)

If you drop a piece of toast it always falls jelly side down. (And the probability of it landing jelly side down is directly proportional to the cost of the carpet.)

And last, but not least – and most irritating: The other checkout line always moves faster! (I rushed to grab the shortest line at the Dollar tree yesterday with two items and waited ten minutes before realizing the cashier was off somewhere searching for just the right balloon with a disgruntled customer.) The nerve of some people!

Of course, there’s always the inverse of Murphy’s Law, with all credit given to a Mr. Steven Willis – and I quote:

"If something does go right, subsequent events will show that it would have been better if it had gone wrong." (Which just goes to show that you can’t win for losing!)

On the brighter side, you won’t lose with a Bit O’ Green for Saint Patrick’s Day – like this Fluffy Jell-O dessert.


4 cups lemon-lime soda – (2 cups must be chilled)

2 3-ounce packages lime gelatin

6 ounces cream cheese, softened

1 12-ounce carton frozen whipped topping, thawed

Microwave 2 cups soda on high for 1-2 minutes or until hot. Place hot soda and gelatin in a blender; cover and process until gelatin is dissolved. Add cream cheese; process until blended. Transfer to a large bowl; stir in chilled soda. Whisk in whipped topping. Pour into a 3-quart glass bowl. Refrigerate, covered, 4 hours or until firm. Makes 16 3/4-cup servings.