It may be true that work on the assembly line dulls the faculties and empties the mind, the cure only being fewer hours of work at higher pay. But during fifty years as a workingman, I have found dull routine compatible with an active mind. I can still savor the joy I used to derive from the fact that while doing dull, repetitive work on the waterfront, I could talk with my partners and compose sentences in the back of my mind, all at the same time. Life seemed glorious. Chances are that had my work been of absorbing interest I could not have done any thinking and composing on the company’s time or even on my own time after returning from work.
People who find dull jobs unendurable are often dull people who do not know what to do with themselves when at leisure. Children and mature people thrive on dull routine, while the adolescent, who has lost the child’s capacity for concentration and is without the inner resources of the mature, needs excitement and novelty to stave off boredom.
— Eric Hoffer, In Our Time
Close your eyes and place your finger down just about anywhere on the web, and you’ll find some entitled dullard whining about the oppressiveness of work. In truth, it’s all projection, like the man said. I used to compose poems and posts in my head while driving down lonely highways in the middle of the night; now I do it while cutting the grass or processing and shipping merchandise for clients. All the money and free time in the world won’t help people who are fundamentally empty and lazy.