Laws of Life

Laws of Life

Wizard’s Principle: On every mountain there is a single pebble which, if you move it will unleash an avalanche. Find that pebble.

The Law of the Missing Piece:  He who shows up with a critical absent resource will unleash a huge response.  One tiny piece changes the whole system.

Motherball’s Law of Options Shock: Whenever you choose something, you are NOT choosing everything else.

Motherball’s Corollary: When you date one girl, you are rejecting all the other girls on earth.  Whatever you are doing, you are NOT doing everything else.

Spencer’s Dictum: If you don’t know where you are going, any path will take you there, but the world steps out of the way to let a man pass who knows where he is going.

Law of the Gnaw: The greatest work is not accomplished by super humans making bold moves; rather it is accomplished by ordinary people tenaciously gnawing away at the task, a little bit every day. Tenacity trumps all other suits.

Alex’s Story Maxim: Never spoil a good story with the truth.

Law of the Adventure: A bad adventure is better than no adventure at all. Always choose the adventure that will give you the best stories later on.

Randall’s Laws of Entrepreneurship

  • Never sell something that won’t sell itself.
  • Selling a bad idea makes more money than sitting on a great idea.
  • Nothing is worth anything if no one knows about it.
  • Only hire additional workers when you are pulling your hair out and losing sleep.
  • Hire experts for the things you don’t know.
  • If it is such a good idea that everyone is doing it, then it is time to get out.
  • Never tell the IRS anything they don’t already know. It will only cause new problems.
  • A foot in the mouth is better than the curse of silence, so speak about your idea.
  • If the first 15 people who hear about a new idea all say “WOW”, then get a patent or copyright.
  • When you are looking at your stock portfolio value and saying “Wow!” It is time to sell everything.
  • In that old saw about BIG money; “Had it, lost it, had it, lost it…” It is way better to end that with “still have it” than all of the other options.

Law of Costly Loss: The most expensive thing for any organization is the person walking out the door on their last day of work. They know all about the business, the people and how it all works.  The replacement person has to learn it all.

Law of lost objects: If you can’t find a tool, it is just like not owning it.  

Randall’s Glass Maxim: Never lament that your glass is half empty or half full. Thank God you have a glass and it will be filled to overflowing.

Lilly Tomlin’s Adage: No matter how cynical you get, it is never enough to keep up.

There are two kinds of people in the world

  1. those who plan ahead and those who wonder what is happening to them.
  2. those who divide the world into two kinds of people and those who don’t.

Rules for Children:

  • No hitting and no hitting back. It doesn’t matter who started it, everyone gets punished.
  • You may not have what you are crying to get, but if you stop and talk we might consider getting it.


Paradise Principle: If your brain is working on the Internet, your body can be in paradise

Randall’s Travel Maxim: Film is cheaper than plane tickets. Corollary: Never scrimp on taking pictures at the Grand Canyon.

Good News Guy’s Maxim: “Speak in Sound Bites”

Writers Perplex: When you are writing a book or a dissertation, everyday feels like Tuesday; there is no relief in sight.

Randall’s Line Law: Wherever there is a line, there is an opportunity… To realize the opportunity; get out of line. Do the opposite of what everyone else is doing.

Stars Strategy: Take lessons from the stars. You’ll learn more from the star of their field than from a mundane teacher in your own field.

Alex’s Maxim on Novelty: Every new idea enters a universe that is totally devoted to the old idea.

When presenting new ideas – never describe a new idea using all new vocabulary.

Laws of media:

  1. Good press begets more press.
  2. If your idea is new and spreads like a virus, you do not need to advertise or call random people hoping to make a sale.
  3. Make yourself newsworthy.
  4. Make news.


Miracle Maxim: Never underestimate the universe’s capacity to deliver miracles. But they don’t drop out of the sky. Even miracles need a stage, a venue and you must prepare the stage before a miracle can happen.

New Baby Law: Sleep when baby sleeps.

Randall’s Presidential Principle: If you are going to be in the same room with the President, have a letter in your pocket detailing some idea you think should be put into effect. You just might change the world.


Margaret Mead’s Laws:

You can’t step into the same river – ONCE! (Her idea, you figure it out)

If you see something odd or unusual, look around to see if the people around you think it is odd. If not, then what you are seeing is normal there. If others are acting like it is odd, then it is odd to them too.

Look for patterns in all things. Look for all the things that don’t fit the patterns and then look for patterns among all the odd fellows.

Mead’s dissertation Adage , “Write on the smallest possible topic, with the least controversy and the fewest elements to examine. You are writing you LAST dissertation, not your first book, so keep it short and simple and get it over with.”

Gregory Bateson said, “All species have organized life this way, the female principle is single and well preserved, while the male principle is multiple and squandered.”

Lesson from Copernicus: All human progress is characterized by the slow but steady loss of the human ego in the explanation of how things are.


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