If you're wondering why you always have a deep urge to be a lazy, unproductive goof off, Joshua Glenn and Mark Kingwell have written a manifesto for you. It's called The Idler's Glossary, and it's a history via creative etymologies and definitions of words that refer to the high art of slackery. An odd and beautiful book, The Idler's Glossary imagines an alternate world where free time is valued as much as cubicle time. Glenn told us via email:
The Glossary is a utopian book, imagining a world where our contemporary values have been revalued — from that vantage point, for example, the heroic slacker (who sticks it to the man by goofing off at work) seems a tragically misguided figure. Because he's still trapped in the value system that privileges work over not-work. Oh, and I invoke Philip K. Dick three times — see APATHETIC, GOOF (OFF), and TINKER.
Ah Dick, that most lazy of idlers. Glenn isn't just celebrating laziness, you see: He's suggesting that our hyper-productive work values are skewed. We need to be idle more often, need to have time to read and ponder, so that we can dream up better worlds instead of just living in this crappy one. Also, by the way, the book is just good, silly fun. The Idler's Glossary [via Amazon]