The Laziest Thing I’ve Ever Seen

Dr. Robyn's Dog, Casey, in favor of occasional laziness

Dr. Robyn's dog, Casey, in favor of occasional laziness

How Lazy Can you Be?

Dr. Robyn J.A. Silverman

Yesterday, I saw one of the laziest scenes I’ve ever seen. While out walking down the street with my dog, Casey, I saw one of my fully-able neighbors “walking” her dog too…except she was in her car…with the leash hanging out the window…so her dog could walk and she could…ride.

,,,and they say that having a dog makes people less lazy!

Is Laziness due to genetics? Modern Conveniences? “Poor Physique?”

J. Timothy Lightfoot recently published an article out of the University of North Carolina suggesting that some people might actually have a laziness gene which predisposes them to being slothlike. Others simply say that all the internet tools and modern conveniences are what make them lazier.  (If there’s any question of who’s the most lazy the UN’s International Labor Organization says American’s are among the laziest when they compare the proportion of American workers who put in more than 48 hours per week with other workers from around the world.) I even came across an article in the New York Times from 1910 entitled “Why Some Children Are Lazy” that said in plain terms that lack of determination and high levels of laziness are simply the result of “poor physique.”

So…what do you think? Are we getting lazier? Why? Genetics? Poor physique? The Internet? Modern Conveniences ? Poor diet ? Too much help ? Need for more in-school or after-school activity?

And after the shock of watching my neighbor “walk” her dog while she drove her car down the side street—I have to ask—WHAT’S THE LAZIEST THING YOU’VE EVER SEEN???

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3 Responses

  1. Holy cow, that’s lazy. Let’s give her the benefit of the doubt and assume she had just had surgery, or her leg was broken, or SOMETHING! I would be so embarrassed to have anyone see me driving my dog!

    I don’t know about genetics playing a part, I’ve got no background in that. I think it has more to do with how you were brought up and who you surround yourself with.

    And I don’t believe for one bit that study that shows American workers don’t work as much. Aren’t there also facts out there about the Europeans (French especially) working less and less each year? Aren’t they going on strike about that all the time? 🙂

  2. Yes. let’s hope she had a better reason that laziness for driving her dog! Unfortunately– I didn’t notice any broken legs!

    I think it’s what you’ve grown up with as well– in the study about genetics and laziness, they had 2 groups of mice. One group came from parent mice who were raised to be lazy (and their offspring wound up being lazy too) and the other group came from parent mice who were raised to be active. In this case, it’s “like parents, like children.”

    The problem with the “how hard Americans work” idea is that it’s measuring how long we work rather than how focused we are while working. But– with all the texting, pinging, commenting, and facebooking, I have to wonder if people are working as hard as they might appear…

    Thanks for visiting!

    Dr. Robyn

  3. I think that laziness is taught to children by their parents, and it begins a cycle… Of course, it’s also semantics – “too lazy to cook a proper meal” could really be that the single parent working two jobs chooses the quickie meals as a way to save time, so that’s really about choices.

    Usually I see kids who talk about their parents not cooking at home, and knowing they have 2 fully able parents to do a proper sit down dinner, I have to say that they are lazy – too lazy to cook or too lazy to learn how (and teach their child to cook!)

    One thing that I see that really irks me is the parent too lazy to get their own beer from the fridge and sends the child to get one. Great message to be teaching!

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