I divide my officers into four classes; the clever, the lazy, the industrious, and the stupid. Each officer possesses at least two of these qualities. Those who are clever and industrious are fitted for the highest staff appointments. Use can be made of those who are stupid and lazy. The man who is clever and lazy however is for the very highest command; he has the temperament and nerves to deal with all situations. But whoever is stupid and industrious is a menace and must be removed immediately!
—General Kurt von Hammerstein-Equord
I’ve been pretty interested in the idea of laziness for most of my life, tracing back to the experience of having a teacher in middle school who regularly accused me of being lazy. It really made me wonder what it means to “be lazy”. Sure, I didn’t like working. But isn’t it the default state of human beings to be averse to work? You might think, “No, not me. I’m willing to work very hard.” Well yes, you may work very hard when hard work is required to attain something you desire, but that doesn’t mean you’re not averse to work.