Tumbling toast, Murphy's Law and the fundamental constants

  title={Tumbling toast, Murphy's Law and the fundamental constants},
  author={R A J Matthews},
  journal={European Journal of Physics},
  pages={172 - 176}
We investigate the dynamics of toast tumbling from a table to the floor. Popular opinion is that the final state is usually butter-side down, and constitutes prima facie evidence of Murphy's Law ('If it can go wrong, it will'). The orthodox view, in contrast, is that the phenomenon is essentially random, with a 50/50 split of possible outcomes. We show that toast does indeed have an inherent tendency to land butter-side down for a wide range of conditions. Furthermore, we show that this outcome…