I am a person with a lot of internal conflicts, but none have been as enduring as cheap vs. lazy. My baseline in life is extremely lazy. I actually have friends who LOVE to do stuff. They even want to do stuff when they’re on vacation. Me, I want to sit on my rear and stare at something. It can be the TV, it can be an ocean, whatever. I want to do as little as possible at all times. I could sit and watch TV literally all day, every day. I would never be bored if I had my stories (I was on hospital bed rest during the 2007 Writer’s Strike. The only thing on TV that wasn’t a repeat was the news. Talk about kicking me when I was down.)

You’d think cheap would go well with lazy, but they are often diametrically opposed. For example, a cheap person will make a birthday cake from scratch. A lazy person will go to the bakery and buy a pre-made cake, then go home and watch TV. I’ve touched on this a bit in my DIY posts, but if I come across something I think I can make for less than what it would cost to buy? It’s on like Donkey Kong.

My struggle started around age eleven, when I began babysitting. I made around $2/hour per kid (SLAVE LABOR). I’d play lots of games with the kids, but I’d be thinking things like, “I’m only getting paid fifty cents to referee this game of Trouble (with the pop-o-matic bubble), but if I convinced the kids to watch TV I’d be getting fifty cents to sit on the couch.” This is how games like Coma were invented. I was the best worst babysitter ever.

Another example of cheap vs. lazy is from when I worked for the Dodgers. My desk was about ten steps away from the kitchen that held a coffee maker (free) and a soda machine ($0.25/soda). If I wanted to walk several hundred feet (literally the equivalent of walking from left field to behind home plate) to the press box, I could get free sodas and gourmet coffees. Sometimes there was even free soft-serve. And yet. Walking! So far! Much tired!

I kept a list of the pros and cons for the two drink options that my coworkers thought was hilarious. I wish I still had it, it was something like:

drink chart

It’s sort of becoming more clear to me why I was laid off.

My coworkers would stop by my desk on their way to get a beverage and they’d always say, “Is it a cheap day, or a lazy day?” Of course, that answer changed by the hour…and it often depended on who was asking.

So far, it seems that Annabel is my polar opposite: she’s expensive and busy. The only way you can get her to sit still is to take her to a movie…and even then, she’s dancing during the credits and begging to buy all the merchandise. I’m glad she’s not lazy. Laziness is one of my worst traits and I’d totally change that about myself except there’s a Friends marathon on TV right now and my couch is so comfy. I do hope she becomes a little cheaper, and by that I mean she stops wanting every single thing she sees on a billboard/magazine ad/TV commercial. I’ve been teaching her about budgets and saving for special things and she thinks it is, hands down, the most boring thing I have ever dared to speak with her about.

On the other hand, James loves to take naps…there’s something to be said about having a partner in couch sitting. Is it being lazy if you’re staring at your baby while he sleeps? I’ll have to look into this further.