Eureka or something like it

I guess it all started this afternoon when I found the wildlife reserve of horrors in my back yard. While doing a little past due but routine yard cleaning, I found the following: One snake of the small but agile variety, one frog, one turtle, several dozen spiders, a couple of daddy long legs, and more slugs and leaches than I care to remember.

The epiphany started with a phrase that usually defines personal extraordinary frustration: Fuck me.

I’m embarassed to admit, I left some non-yard items in my back yard for too long. The oversight killed a large section of grass and provided a habitat for all things creepy. I spent the next three hours trying to figure out why I would let that happen to a yard in which I take some amount of pride. I settled on one word that has come to define my life and spirit.


Somehow I have let myself become the laziest person I know. I’ve stopped taking care of the things that matter to me. My personal possessions are a mess. My body has gone to hell. I don’t challenge my mind very often. And, frankly, I’ve stopped working toward any goal.

I’m surrounded by inspiration. I have several friends who are losing weight. I have a few friends that are working hard on their careers. I have others that are working on killing their personal demons. I have others who are making goals to reach in the second half of their life. Me…I’m drinking a lot, sleeping too late, working when I have to, and putting off any major life decisions. Not because I’m a drunk, insomniac in a bad job that prevents me from living a real life. It’s because I’m lazy.

Last night I stood under the light of a crescent moon and distant lighthouse. The Atlantic made little noise at low tide. My wife and a friend splashed about 30 feet from shore, while a girl I know stood ankle deep in the water, her hands above her head, her chest pushed out, her chin aimed at the moon. All three were at peace.

A friend stood next to me. He said something that I won’t repeat here (the effect wouldn’t be the same without the ambiance). But it struck me, because it made me realize he was both enjoying the moment and living 20 years from now…at the same. He can love an imperfect life because he’s working toward perfection and has no doubt it is coming.

It’s around this time that I would normally announce a SIP (Self Improvement Project) aimed at changing my life, if only for a couple of months. Frankly, those never work and I’m making no announcements.

Right now I’m going to let myself sleep with the realization that I may have just completed the first step in something good: Admitting I have a laziness problem.

I tell ya, if it weren’t for little detours to the ocean, friends who live out dreams, and leaches…I don’t know how I would live my life.

Brad Willis

Brad Willis is a writer based in Greenville, South Carolina. Willis spent a decade as an award-winning broadcast journalist. He has worked as a freelance writer, columnist, and professional blogger since 2005. He has also served as a commentator and guest on a wide variety of television, radio, and internet shows.

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