Would it kill ya to lift a finger?

Oh dear god. We have become the laziest species on the planet. Sloths got nothin’ on us, it seems.  Perhaps it is wrong for me to get aggravated over such a small thing, but I can’t help but feel that it’s a sign of a larger problem.

What has gotten me so perturbed this early in the morning, you ask?  It’s the automatic door button.

Yes, that’s right. The button you touch (or slap, as seems to be the case in the building where I work) to cause the outside door to automatically open for you.  A wonderful contraption for those who need assistance — a life-saver, in fact. And I will gladly admit to having used the button myself when my hands were full of packages or when I’m bringing my bicycle inside.   You see, I’m not  totally against this device. In fact, one of the courses that I created and teach addresses accessibility, and one of “hooks” I use to get folks to buy on to the idea of making a little extra effort to make their websites accessible is the curb cut: originally designed to assist people using wheelchairs, it’s used every day by folks with strollers, suitcases on wheels, bicycles, etc. Technology can make our lives better. That’s a fact.

Perhaps the fact that one of these doors — and buttons — is located next to my office makes me acutely  aware of just how many times a day this feature is used by healthy hands-free people of all ages. The more it is used this way, the more my Luddite self resists. It’s gotten so bad that I found myself extremely annoyed when someone coming the building behind me yesterday hit the button, causing the door to “magically” open right before my eyes.  He thought he was doing me a favor. He actually caused my blood pressure to go up a few notches.

I just can’t help but think about Wall E. Sure, it was funny when those humans of the future sat in recliners all day and couldn’t lift a finger. Ha ha. Silly people. Fiction? Perhaps. But perhaps one day we humans will just have these worthless appendages hanging at our sides, limp and too weak to use.  Or, perhaps not, given that the many of the same people who don’t expend any energy to open the door themselves will spend much money and time at a gym, “working out.”

Don’t even get me started on the ones who circle their cars around the parking lot to find the closest spot to the front of the gym door.



  1. We have those buttons at National Geographic headquarters, and I’m sure no one stops to think of the electrical current draw and resulting carbon expenditure from touching (right – “slapping”) that blue button. Agreed, if someone has their hands full, that’s a different story – it’s a reasonable convenience. But more often than not I see freehanded lazy people using the power doors.

  2. not to mention, how much longer the door stays open when using the button, letting much more outside air into the building to be heated or cooled! what a waste of energy due to sheer laziness.

    give em hell sister!

  3. I currently reside in a hotel (government relocation – temporary quarters) with 2 dogs. It’s 4 flights of steps to the back door. So that’s 4 flights down and 4 flights up several times/day with the dogs. Plus several times/day for myself. Whenever I mention this people ask, in a rather shocked tone, “Isn’t there an elevator!?!?” Of course there is. But neither I or the dogs need to be that lazy. So we take the stairs. Not only will it not kill us, but it’s (dare I say it?) actually good for us. *GASP*

    1. And how many of those same people pay for the privilege of walking up imaginary steps for 45 minutes on an eliptical at their local gym?!

      People are goofy.

  4. I like the new look! Yes, people are truly lazy. One of my favorite examples of this is the new Minute Rice which is already cooked and just has to be heated up in the microwave. The old Minute Rice actually took 5 minutes to cook. So, pre-cooked Minute Rice, for people who don’t have the patience to wait 5 minutes. Jeez.

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