I need to get in another day of laziness before the end of Summer this weekend. After all, the old Nat King Cole hit, “Lazy, Hazy, Crazy Days of Summer” extols summertime laziness, doesn’t it?
“…Those days of soda and pretzels and beer
Roll out those lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer
You’ll wish that summer could always be here….”
–1962 by Hans Carste & Charles Tobias
Part of the problem was that this Summer in Northeast Nebraska wasn’t as hot and humid as usual. That translated into fewer lazy days. It’s not that I’m too upset about less summertime discomfort. It’s more about enjoying the virtue of sometimes being lazy. Summer heat demotivates me.
I understand the social norm of decrying laziness and promoting industriousness. I really do comprehend that our time on Earth is short and precious. We’re told to seize each moment of every day and put time to good use. We’re not supposed to procrastinate; idleness is religiously prohibited; and we should never succumb to laziness. Such advice is smart and useful–up to a point.
Sometimes, we need unscheduled, unstructured mental and physical breaks in the action. If practiced prudently, a lazy day is a superb way to spend some precious time. Why spend every waking moment engaged in work or active play?
I’m not simply rationalizing my need for another lazy day before the equinox is upon us on Monday. The occasional day of unstructured sloughing off is good for the mind and body.
Modern humans have been socialized into structuring and scheduling our lives. We are taught to awaken at specific times, and go to bed at certain times in order to obtain the optimum amounts of alertness and physical energy to use in our professions and everyday tasks. This makes perfect sense if one wishes to achieve professional and personal success.
This socially encouraged lifestyle becomes problematic when we feel the need to “pencil in” a day off work or some other type of R & R. Too often, our days off are filled with scheduled activity like finishing household chores, going on a date with a spouse or lover, engaging in organized play, preparing to go to work after the day off. It’s not unusual to feel more worn out after a weekend than after a day at work. In fact, some folks bring work home from the workplace to complete while away from work.
Don’t we work in order to live and not live in order to work? There’s the oft-quoted saying, “No man ever said on his deathbed, ‘I wish I had spent more time in the office.'” Of course, as with all truisms, there have probably been some workaholics who have uttered the deathbed wish when their time on Earth has expired. I feel sorry for them.
Anyway, I’m probably going to at least be a little lazy today because I stayed up late last night. There is a multi-part documentary on YouTube about the “Inquisition” that I’ve been binge watching. In order to finish viewing the last installment, I stayed up an extra hour. The story was so mentally stimulating that I had trouble nodding off to sleep, too.
I need to return two books to the public library today. So, I’ll probably aimlessly hang out there for awhile. Most of my necessary errands have already been taken care of. Maybe I’ll watch a baseball game. My SF Giants are playing at Atlanta this weekend. Game or no game, I just want to vegetate in my easy chair and simply stare out the window this afternoon.
I really don’t want to schedule any part of my day, today. I just need to be a bit lazy.