The Lazy Man's Guide To Life and Loafing


Memorial Day: Remember to Remember What It Is We’re Supposed to Remember

Memorial Day is a day to remember. We’re supposed to remember something in particular, but folks don’t seem to know what that is, so they just try to remember to pick up the extra long hotdog buns, and maybe an extra pack, since hotdogs come in packs of 10, while hotdog buns come in packs of 8. It’s a conspiracy! And that kind of devious strategy made to make people buy twice what they want is what made this country what it is today.  Maybe that’s what we’re supposed to remember.

[Note: we're actually supposed to remember fallen soldiers. Get it right, Lazy Man! Here are some reasons you should do this.]

But in between remembering and not remembering, there’s a lot of loafing around. And, honestly, there are plenty of reasons that Americans’ love of fun has made this a great country too. Consider the following:

1. Beer hat: nothing says “American ingenuity” like a hat that can dispense beer. Some guy must have had a lot of beers (and maybe a sunburn on his bald spot) to figure that one out. (More about beer below.)

2. Festivals: whether you’re in a small town, or a big city, there’s always some kind of festival going on somewhere. Americans will “fest” anything, like squash or cucumbers, dogs (every Lazy Man should own or borrow a dog), kids (own or borrow one of those, too), fire trucks, antique cars or any variety of loud, blaring music. Really, these are all just excuses to have a deep fried Oreo.

3. The Sunday drive: we invented cars, so why not invent ways to waste money and guzzle gas enjoying them? Grab your keys and head out for open country. You should be able to reach the pristine wilderness in about five days or so.

4. The Sunday nap: Actually, this Great American Pasttime is good for any day of the week.

5. Beer: Okay, Americans didn’t invent beer. But we made a beer culture to rival no other. Scantily clad ladies, super slick cars. Scantily clad ladies in super slick cars. A mediocre-looking guy with a beer gut surrounded by scantily clad ladies hanging all over his super slick car. As American as baseball (based on the British game of Rounders) and apple pie (also not invented by Americans). We’re really great at stealing good ideas from other places and claiming ownership of them as our own (I’m looking at you, American Idol). Still, beer was there at the cradle of civilization and will be there (most definitely) at its downfall. Chug!

So, if you love being an American (and I know you do!) remember to remember stuff this Memorial Day. Like making sure the wife gets the right kind of hotdog buns.

Beer hats! Making America great all over again. Get yours at http://www.drinkingstuff.com.



Lazy Wins, Every Time: a Word of Advice to the Class of 2012

Congratulations, Lazy Graduate! You managed to slouch your way through school, and now they are rewarding your sloth with a piece of paper that will get you a wonderful, exciting career ahead of you a free mochachino at Starbucks. Just kidding, you still have to pay for the mochachino.

You’re not going to hear the words of wisdom I’m about to give you from the commencement speaker at your graduation. Those people are far too busypants to realize the golden truths I will bestow upon you. And even if your school did invite me to speak (they didn’t), I probably wouldn’t show up anyway. So take a seat, Lazy Graduate, and listen to your wiser, lazier elders.

Truth vs Myth: The Lazy Man’s 10 Noble Truths About Adulthood

Truth: They’ve all been lying to you, pretty much since birth, about most everything, particularly about the fruits hard work and perseverance. It started with Ben Franklin (who was notoriously self-indulgent, and fond of beer and loose women) and ended with Mr. Throckmorton your guidance counselor. If you want fruits, have a tarte.

Myth: “Do what you love and the money will follow.” Sorry, Lazy Graduate, but nobody is going to pay you to sleep, drink beer, watch sports and play video games. Your best bet is to find a job where you can sneak at least two of those activities in while nobody’s looking. (Need real career advice? The Lazy Man’s got it!)

Myth: Women are looking for a breadwinner. That may be what your mother told you, but she also told you that spinach would put hair on your chest, and so far, that’s not really working out for you. These days, what the modern, liberated woman wants is someone helpless and needy they can nurture and take care of. If she’s too into their career for kids right now, that someone is you.

Myth: If something’s worth doing, it’s worth doing well. Unless you’re talking about steaks on the grill, then this one is pure bunk. Life is full of golden opportunities to do a half-assed job. A half-assed job leaves you time to do more interesting things, like watch TV.

Truth: And let’s just say this, while we’re at it: very few things in life have dire repercussions if you don’t do them. The Lazy Man’s Principle #2 says, “If you ignore a problem long enough, it will cease to be a problem.”

Myth: Once you graduate, you have to leave school. Au contraire, Lazy Graduate (that means “no way, man”). Some people spend their whole lives as perpetual students. They’re called “doctoral students.” If you never, ever want to join the real world, consider going after a higher degree. Already got one? Start a collection.

Truth: Jobs are generally boring and pointless, but with a little cunning, you need do only a few hours of actual work in a week. Here’s how.

Myth: Listen to the wisdom of your elders. For some reason, people think that just because some old coot has endured decades of human folly that he’s wiser and smarter than you. I think our nation’s elders demonstrated they are just as ignorant as the rest of us when they protested “Keep your government hands off my Medicare!”

Truth: Having fun does not have to be strenuous. There are plenty of sedentary activities that will provide you a lifetime of satisfaction, without your ever having to set foot in a squash court or on a ski slope.

Myth: In this great country of ours, any kid can grow up to be President. This one may actually be true. The point is, that chump will not  be you.

All the adults in your life want you to succeed in school, get a good job, make people proud, etc. But the path to happiness very often has nothing at all to do with any of those things and everything to do with being yourself. And scratching where it itches.

At least you can be sure that your mother will always love you. And maybe do your laundry.

Good luck, Lazy Graduate! Now get out there, and…do nothing.

You have to wonder about a so-called rite of passage where you actually throw away your hat. Is this why they call it a graduation “exercise?”



The Lazy Man’s Guide to Mother’s Day

Face it, Lazy Man, there are few things worse than a Guilt Trip from your Mother.

She’s been on your case all your life, telling you to brush your teeth, clean your room, get a job, stop letting people down, don’t miss your court date and all that other stuff you’ve tuned out for a while.

But mothers do have their uses. Consider:

1. She’s still the only one who can stand your smell.

2. Lots of people are only nice to you because they like your mom.

3. You can still go home with a carload of laundry once in a while, and she’ll do it. She’ll cry, but she’ll do it.

So, this Mother’s Day, do something right for a change and don’t disappoint her this year. Just thank you mom for being great. It doesn’t matter if your mom still embarrasses you in public, or drinks too much, or insists on checking to see if you have on a clean undershirt. She’s still your mom.

That said, “disappointment” is a big concept. If you have set the bar relatively low over the years–and I know you have –you won’t need to do much to please her. Here’s what you should do:

1. Send her a card. A store bought card. A nice one, one that costs more than $3. Gone are the years when you can scribble something on a piece of printer paper and draw a happy face. Gone are the years when you can get one of those free cards from charities and turn a picture of starving children in Africa into a warm and heartfelt sentiment of thanks. Go to the store and pick out a card. Did you know that they actually have a whole section of cards labeled “Mother’s Day?” Check it out.

2. Take her to lunch. Someplace with a menu that folds. If they have cloth napkins, the chances are good that she won’t spend her Mother’s Day lunch in a cheap plastic chair with a greasy taco listening to small children whining and crying. Try not to whine and cry yourself.

That’s it, Lazy Man. Can you get it right this year? A card and a lunch. Simple. One day a year to thank your mom for putting up with you is not asking much, even for a barnacle such as yourself.

For more ideas on celebrating Mother’s Day the lazy way, check out the post from last year. And sit up straight!

A Word from the Lazy Man’s Mother, May 2011

Taco Bell: Great for the 12 AM munchies, but not where your mom wants to go for Mother’s Day



How To Call in Sick When You’re Not
March 22, 2012, 10:00 am
Filed under: How to Be a Lazy Man, The Lazy Man at Work | Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Lazy Man, in our last post we learned how to stay healthy (ie, avoid doctors, eat more). But why should healthy people be penalized and made to work more days simply because they do not need their sick leave? It’s preposterous, you say! It’s unfair, you say! Of course. Just cheat the system and shut up about it.

So, you need to use your sick leave, but you’re not sick. Here’s how to do that:

1. Pick your days carefully. Sick days falling on or around a weekend, especially a three-day weekend, are always fishy. On the other hand, random Wednesdays off are great.

2. Make sure you mention that you’re planning on going to the doctor sometime that day. That way, if you are unfortunate enough to have a concerned co-worker drop  by while you’re not home, you can give them a plausible reason (other than the truth, that is).

3. Call at 5 AM. You’re sure not to catch anybody actually in the office, and you will sound terrible naturally, no acting required. If this is not possible–you just can’t get up that early no matter the incentive–get some tips from WikiHow.

4. Plausible, dreaded illnesses that don’t require the ICU and can’t usually be verified: migraine, stomach flu, back pain, gout (nobody is coming within ten yards of your feet!), fibromyalgia (if you have this one, you’ve got your instant health excuse for the whole year). Avoid: pneumonia (you may have to cough up a lung to sound convincing on the phone), broken/sprained ankle (too hard to remember which one is ailing).

5. If you have someone at  your house who will make you go to work despite your protestations, watch this handy instructional video on how to look sick when you need to.

With a little practice, you will be able to use exactly the right number of sick days and earn yourself a little time in the sun while you’re at it. Live long and lazy, my friend!

movie poster for Ferris Bueller's Day Off

Beuller? Beuller?



A Lazy Man Is a Healthy Man

First lesson: forget doctors. If you go to a doctor, you will end up filling out endless paperwork, getting tons of bills and going all over creation, from one stupid, cottage-y “business condo village” to another. When really, you’re not planning on doing anything they tell you to do anyway.

Now that we’ve got that settled, let’s talk about laziness as a means of better health:

1. Lazy Man Principle #1 states that doing less will help you live longer. In the animal kingdom, we have tons of examples of animals who exemplify this, like the rock fish, who can live for two hundred years by, um, let’s see: pretending to be a rock.

2. Traditional weight loss philosophy is all wrong. To achieve your optimal weight, eat more and do less. Here’s why.

3. Rethink “sanitary.” Germs are our friends. Most Lazy Men I know have befriended so many bacteria, viruses, molds, fungi, parasites and other hangers-on that they have acquired the iron-clad immune systems of a veteran preschool teacher, with only a fraction of the effort.

4. Sleep. Sleep is good.

5. Watch a healthful dose of TV. Laughter is good medicine, right? So bring on the crappy sitcoms, or, if those don’t make you laugh, then watch the news.

You may think that achieving the Lazy Man’s healthy, inactive lifestyle will be expensive, but it need not be. Can’t afford to lie on a beach in the Caribbean? Try meditation (sitting in your La-Z-Boy with your eyes closed), massage (get the wife to rub your shoulders, or try this do-it-yourself foot massage ), saunas (try sitting in a hot car for a while), steam  bath (take an extra long shower) or just catch up on some good reading to maintain a positive mental outlook.

Your chump friends may brag about their skydiving adventures, or the joys of walking the dog, or their tango skills, but your Lazy Butt will be molding the naugahyde of your favorite chair long after they’ve retired their legwarmers in the old folks home.

Live long and lazy, my friend!

Next Week: How to use up sick leave when you’re never sick.

To build your biceps, find a beer can or cans (full) and lift it to your lips approximately 586 times per day. Sipping optional. To get the most of your workout, do not go for light beer.



The Lazy Man’s Guide to Snow

Do you find yourself these days wishing you had a snow day, like you did when you were a kid? That’s not surprising, given the lack of maturity in any given Lazy Man. But as a grownup (like it or not) snow can be a Lazy Man’s best friend or worst enemy. So before you call to cash in your Liberal Leave and prepare to sleep in, drink hot chocolate (or, let’s face it—beer) and watch trashy daytime TV, here are a few warnings about snow.

First, beware supposedly fun activities that are actually work, including the following:

  • Sledding—unless you are sliding downhill to get from your car to your house, or vice versa, remember that you will have to go back uphill again.
  • Making a snowman. If he’s not going to shovel the walk for you, then he’s just one more mouth to feed
  • Ice skating—there really is no point to going round and round in circles, is there?
  • Skiing—you don’t know how much work this actually is until you’ve tried it. Don’t take chances.

On the other hand, you are free to indulge in these activities instead:

  • Making snow angels. These are easy, as they can be done lying down. They are no different, effort-wise, than the dirty laundry angels you have made in your bedroom.
  • Throwing snow balls. True, throwing something involves a little bit of action in the arm area, but the satisfaction of beaning your neighbor while he’s out “pre-shoveling” while it’s still snowing far outweighs the disadvantages of this activity

The actual labor that snow provides must be avoided at all costs. People have died shoveling snow, for example. As for scraping the windshield, or chipping the ice out of the cat’s water dish, I don’t think you should risk it. All of these annoysome and bothertary chores can be avoided with one simple tactic: wait. Snow melts. Automatically. Eventually. And no one needs to get sweaty, dirty or annoyed at trying to remove it “manually.”

If , however, you live in Barrow, Alaska, you might be waiting a while.

 

Suggested by Alaska's own Fort Greeley Cold Regions Testing Center, here's something fun to do in the snow.



The Hair Apparent
January 26, 2012, 10:00 am
Filed under: How to Be a Lazy Man, The Lazy Man at Home | Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Greetings, oh hirsute one. If you have hair, and if you are a Lazy Man, here’s how to keep yourself somewhat groomed without lifting a follicle.

First, the best hairstyle is no hair at all. If this look works for you, go for it–if that train has already left the station, there’s no stopping it anyway. But remember, unless you are naturally bald/balding, there will be upkeep involved. Other low-fuss hairstyles include the following:

  1. The buzz. Select the desired clipper attachment (or none) and get the wife to give you a haircut. No brushing or combing required. Washing optional. The downside: you have to keep clipping to maintain  your optimal “depth” (see “end-all, be-all” below).
  2. The ponytail. Keep it long, all one length and wash it once in a while. With hair longer than chin-length, you never have to worry about having “bed head.”
  3. The fro. If you have the right hair for a truly righteous fro, you’re a lucky guy. Start out with a small fro, and let it grow from there. Stop when you can’t get through doorways anymore.
  4. Dreadlocks. There’s a myth that all you have to do to have dreds is not wash your hair. That’s not really true for everybody. Some guys have to wax their hair. Dred cautiously.
  5. The end-all, be-all hair club for (lazy) men. Start by shaving all of your hair off. Let it grow. Keep growing it. Move from “fro” to “moppish” to ponytail stage, until your hair is so long it becomes a safety hazard. Repeat.

There are plenty of people out there who think we should all ditch our shampoo as an unnecessary element of modern society. If you’re not a total greaseball otherwise, go for it. Personally, I like shampooing, because it gives me a chance to throw some dishes in the shower and do two things at once.

If you’re a guy who likes a lot of “product” in your hair, stop reading this blog. You are not a Lazy Man.

Some signs that you should probably take better care of your hair:

  1. Bugs. Sure, lice are a problem. Also, ants, bees, spiders and the occasional flea are a sign that perhaps you need to invest more time in grooming.
  2. Smell. How wide is the radius around you when you’re walking on a busy sidewalk? If it’s more than five feet, get in the shower.
  3. Tangles. If you’re cursed with stringy hair (the 70’s are over, dude, sorry), try the ponytail or the buzz. You don’t want to lose your cat in there.
  4. Gray. There’s really nothing wrong with gray hair. Just don’t expect any action.
  5. Your own mother doesn’t recognize you. Either get her some glasses, or get a haircut.

With a little effort and a lot of vitamin E, you should be able to look at least presentable enough a) not to get fired b) to avoid hair-related industrial accidents (you shouldn’t be working around heavy machinery anyway, Lazy Man–see here for more career options for you) or c) not to become that creepy, weird guy that nobody will talk to.

And that’s what fashion is all about, isn’t it?

Lo-maintenance at its best!



The Lazy Man’s Guide to Weight Loss

So. The wife says you should lose some weight. Or, maybe your favorite jeans (or sweatpants, or muumuu) are a little too tight for comfort these days. Okay, Lazy Man, let’s get to it.

The conventional wisdom for weight loss these days is simple:

Eat less, do more

Hundreds, nay, thousands of books are out there, all saying pretty much the same thing, with new buzzwords added for maximum profitability. And people are buying them.

The fact remains, however, that Americans are as fat as ever, so clearly we are all much more comfortable with the Lazy Man’s principle of weight loss, which is the following:

Eat more, do less.

So how does it work, you ask? How are you going to squeeze back into a size 2X like when you were younger?

Pay attention, here’s how.

1. Eat more. That’s right, I said eat more. Never go hungry ever again. Going hungry actually kills people, you know. I suggest you eat more meat, more veggies (ketchup counts) and more foods that come in tiny, hard to open containers, like olives. Pick a snooty brand of olives, and you’ll burn calories just trying to get your fingers out of there after you’ve gone in for the ones at the bottom.

2. Do less. Intensive exercise regimens that test your strength and endurance are highly dangerous to your health. Just ask that guy who ran the original marathon in ancient Greece. Oh wait, you can’t, that guy’s dead–and not because it was ancient Greece, but because he died of exhaustion when he got there. No, the better way to sneak in some exercise that’s easy on your weight-laden joints is to fidget. Add a diverse and highly specialized group of nervous tics and twitches to your daily routine (sitting), and the pounds will practically fly off. Some suggestions:

  • clicking a ball point pen in and out, and in and out, and in and out, and, you get the idea
  • laughing, I’ve heard, uses lots of muscles, so line up a Three Stooges marathon and get fit!
  • bouncing your knee (or both knees) up and down really fast while you’re sitting–a good calorie-busting fidget will be able to shake the lamp on the end table next to your wife while she’s reading
  • doing something annoying with your teeth, tongue, lips or any part of your mouth–bonus points if you can get the wife to scream, “Would you ^&%#%^ stop that already?!” in twenty minutes or less
  • butt clenching–perfect for basketball games, Fear Factor or The View

One nervous habit per major body area ought to do it. Use your imagination…and imagine a you that doesn’t need a forklift to wake up in the morning!

And, if all else fails…

3. Fart it out.

Clear the house first. Send the wife shopping with the dog. Preferably, pick a day with something good on TV (see Three Stooges, above). Then, fart. Sure, gas doesn’t weigh much, but I’ve seen what you eat. A few hours of tooting the daylights out of your underwear, and you might decrease the circumference of your abdomen by as muh as 10%. Just be sure not to eat any beans between now and next Friday.

Overweight? Tired? Can't get your Snuggie over your midsection? Don't let this happen to you!



New Year’s Resolutions for the Lazy Man

Happy New Year, Lazy Man! You’ve managed to make it through the end of the year without anyone disowning you, which was one of last year’s resolutions. Congratulations!

If you look upon each January 1 as an opportunity to revist your aspirations, turn over a new leaf, and spring into action…well, stop reading this blog. You are clearly not a Lazy Man.

Still, there are people who will be expecting you to think in this manner (the wife) and if these people (the wife) are encouraging you to do a little more and seek out some self-improvement for 2012, then you can construct this mental list and fully assure these people (the wife) that you agree wholeheartedly and will begin immediately.

Doing More and Seeking Self-Improvement, Lazy Man Style

1. Do more: sleep more, eat more, scratch yourself in more places

2. Watch what you eat: add more “gourmet” and “healthy” items to the wife’s grocery list: get those chips made from sweet potatoes instead of regular potatoes; opt for actual cheese instead of “cheez,” go for top-quality microbrewed beer instead of the cheap stuff. Voila! Better living.

3.  Spend more time with family: sign up for picture-in-picture, so you and the wife can both watch TV at the same time.

4. Save money: amuse yourself with what’s at hand, such as an empty beer can or a coaster

5. Learn something new: with these sedentary hobbies, you can expand your mind, and become the most pretentious bore ever, without leaving the easy chair

With any luck, you might actually keep your resolutions longer than the average schmuck, or even the wife.

Thank you Betty Mills/Terra Brand Chips (www.bettymills.com) for healthier living through junk food



The Lazy Man’s Last Minute Christmas Shopping Guide

Okay, Lazy Man, you’ve got less than a week until Christmas and you haven’t done any shopping. How did you let it get so late…again?

Here’s how we’ll solve this one. First, resolve next year to:

1. Place one order for Amazon on December 1. Buy twelve of the same thing and give it to everybody on your list.

2. Shut up about it.

But since you haven’t done that, and it’s way too late, even for the Super Speedy Whizbang Shipping That Costs $50 an Ounce, you’ll have to come up with Plan B. Here it is:

Plan B

1. Scour your house for stuff that you already have, especially stuff that is buried under other stuff. If no one has seem the item in the last nine months or so, it is likely they will have forgotten it. So you can give the wife the same red sweater you gave her last year, because it ended up in the pile of lights and stuff to put away after the holidays were over. If she’s more likely to have put things away on her own, then you’ll have to find her one of yours. She probably has no idea what’s in your closet. Or under that mound of stuff draped over the back of your easy chair. Or in those boxes in the garage. Who knows? You might find something nice.

2. Raid the fridge. This is a great one for people who do not live with you, like your brother-in-law or the mail man. This time of year, there’s a lot of good stuff in the fridge, perhaps waiting to be served for that big Christmas feast. But let’s face it–no one will notice if that giant cheese log isn’t put out with the other snacks. Give it to your mom, or your nephew, or that kid that went into your back yard and never came out again.

Other good food finds: wine (that disappears all the time anyway), Christmas cookies (or take the whole plate of them from the kitchen at work), fruit (those precious individually-wrapped apples and oranges are the perfect gift for the snob in your life).

3. Pad the wife’s shopping list. Chances are, someone close to you (like the wife) is going to go out to the grocery store to get supplies for company. Just sneak a few items on the list, and let someone else do the heavy lifting. Items you can add to the list: cat food (trust me, your Aunt Martha will gush about this gift), motor oil (ditto for your Uncle Jed), bubble bath (just look the other way when the wife brings it in and asks why it was on the list), and the perennial favorite: socks. One year I gave plain white sport socks to everyone on my list (see “Amazon,” above), and they all nodded and gave me big, wide-eyed, unbelieving smiles. It was a magical moment.

4. Stuff you can make while sitting in your easy chair: there must be a zillion things you can make from an empty beer can. Have about a dozen beers or so, and the ideas will be flowing like water. And you’ll have enough “supplies” to make something for everyone.

5. One last-ditch idea: go to the batty old lady down the street and tell her you’re collecting stuff for charity. She’ll probably supply you with enough tea cozies and toilet paper covers to outfit the your entire family tree. Just be sure to thank her by giving her that cheese log from your fridge.

Bonus idea: wrap up the family pet. Your gift will be to let him out before little Timmy has conniptions. Awww, isn't that cute?

Merry Christmas Lazy Man!

 




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