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Konrad Werner: The ultimate sicknote

This week, Konrad salutes Kristina Schröder, the woman who has given sheer idleness a moral dimension.

Image for Konrad Werner: The ultimate sicknote
Photo by Laurence Chaperon (Wikimedia Commons)

Basically, I am an extremely lazy person. This blog, for instance, did not get a first line until I completed Zombie Cricket three times. But that’s nothing. Real laziness hurts. Sometimes I will sit absolutely still on a sofa for up to an hour, like a lizard baking on a rock, rather than go to the toilet. I will happily endure the growing-physical-discomfort-bordering-on-pain brought on by an unrelieved bladder just to spare myself the effort of getting up and shuffling even as far as the sink in the bathroom. That, my friends, is called willpower.

But despite my Herculean sloth, I still have much to learn from Women’s and Family Minister Kristina Schröder. While I still pretend I am doing something when people are looking, Schröder this week published a whole book which brazenly explained why she hadn’t done anything in the past three years in her job, and why she was glad.

Schröder’s theses, laid out in Thanks, We’re Emancipated Ourselves, argued that Germany does not need a Women’s and Family Minister, because women and families don’t need any new policies – things like more kindergarten places or a gender quota.

No, instead, the book argued, what they need is to be left alone, especially by feminists, who are always coming up with annoying gender roles that make women insecure.

From one lazy person to another, I can only indolently tip my hat to Schröder’s inspiring dedication to absolute idleness. This book is the ultimate sick note. In fact, it’s a moral sick note. If Angela Merkel calls and asks, “So, have you got any new policy ideas, Kristina? You know, about families or women and stuff?” Schröder can just point at the book, and say “That would be against my principles. Are you asking me to be a hypocrite?” Angie wouldn’t have a leg to stand on.

Then Kristina would open her briefcase, which contains a sandwich, a Kit Kat, and a bumper Sudoko collection, and wait till dinner time, hopefully by when the nanny will have put her kid to bed.