Laziness

There’s never been a shortage of people eager to label other people as “lazy.” Nor, one can be certain, is there anything new about laziness.

Laziness may, in fact, be a defining characteristic of the human condition. There once was a Neanderthal who did not drag women by their hair and out of (or into) the cave. It’s true; look it up. This was not a consequence of being evolved, however. The same guy also wasn’t interested in hunting or gathering.

Clearly, and well apart from the Rogerian world of unconditional, nondirective talk therapy, there is no way to characterize “lazy” as a positive attribute.

Technology, some assert, plays a facilitating role in the human condition of laziness. Either as initiator or the enabling agent.

Today, companies such as Amazon, Uber and Lyft are well-known conspirators in the broad social movement toward laziness, paradoxical though that may sound. Sit before your computer or hold your device, press an app and “Presto!” something not-present appears. Effortlessly. But for the thumb motion and ensuing carpal tunnel. We’re always miserable, aren’t we?

Likewise, HelloFresh and Blue Apron are services that allow one to eat like a gourmet with meal kits delivered directly to where it is one wishes to consume them. Home, for instance. Effortlessly.

Even if we like thinking it is, the incredible trend toward indolence isn’t novel. A product of the digital age, perhaps? Or young people who have simply taken over the entire world, ruining everything for everyone else. Oh, that’s the same thing.

Let’s think about this.

Take the television remote control, for instance. The TV remote was once a hard-wired device physically connecting and tethering the human hand with the TV set. Who, oldsters at that time thought, was so lazy as to be incapable of getting off their rump and walk across the room to change the channel? For cryin’ in the sink!

Pushing a button on the remote yielded a “click” sound, accompanied by the “clunk” of the TV’s channel selector physically moving (rotating) from one channel (all 12 of them – there were no UHF channels back then) to the next. And that’s not all! Unwitting visitors to the weirdly-named living room in which the appliance was housed might easily trip on the cord stretching across the floor from remote to TV. Lots and lots of household hazards.

Or cruise control in automobiles, as another example. Push a button and set the speed your car will travel at. Think of all the wear and tear saved on shoe soles, not to mention big-toe injury due to depressing the accelerator. Lazy!

And let’s not overlook power windows, also in the portable home (cars). Instead of the laborious, bicep-bending cranking involved in lowering or raising an automobile window, now windows – and all of them, by the way! – are fluidly operated with the touch of a finger. Any finger. Even a child’s!

Curiously, or maybe not, more often than not, the accuser tends to be older and the target of the accused “Laziness” younger. Because, as is well known, older people possess only positive attributes. And are always in an advantageous and strategic position to judge others. Especially for their infractions.

Laziness is a trait that is pervasive. Ubiquitous!

And is there anyone, anywhere on the face of the planet who can live without such modern conveniences? Who?

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