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Lazy or Efficient?

My wife and I replaced a toilet recently.🚽With the old toilet removed and the drain pipe exposed, we noticed that the flange was rusty so I sprayed it with some rust stop spray paint. It needed to dry overnight, so we had to leave the toilet disconnected. Now…. I won’t say who, but someone didn’t turn the handle on the shutoff valve tight enough. And, you guessed it - overnight, water slowly dripped out and flooded the bathroom. 🤦🏻‍♂️

The next day, my wife discovered water on the floor 😱 and frantically called me to help her clean it up. Thankfully, the cardboard I had laid down to rest the new toilet on had soaked up most of the water. 😅 However, water still managed to spread up against the bathtub and the vanity. I definitely wasn’t worried about the bathtub, because it was clearly caulked along the base. So it was protected. The vanity, however, was a little harder to tell. She thought that I should pry up the quarter round and see if any water had gotten in. I told her that I was pretty sure it was caulked and it should be fine. 🤨

OK, here’s the part where you tell me if I was being lazy or efficient. Now, to be honest, I was pretty tired at this point, and really didn’t want to deal with it. Although, I honestly didn’t think that it was an issue. In my mind, prying up the quarter round would reveal that it was dry. So I thought, “what’s the point? Why bother?”

"I seriously didn’t think it was necessary to spend the time and effort on something that I could only foresee being pointless in the end."

To be fair, my wife has been right about things more often than not throughout the 20 years we’ve been married. But, I seriously didn’t think it was necessary to spend the time and effort on something that I could only foresee being pointless in the end. Was she right? Time will tell. I still haven’t pried up the quarter round to take a look and I don’t plan on it. If it turns out down the road, that mold grew as a result of my choosing not to do the thing that probably only would have taken a few minutes, well… That’s on me.

This whole incident got me thinking. How often do we face decisions like this? In business, in raising children, in creating art, in life. There’s often a choice to be made. We can be thorough, double check, and make sure we’ve done our due diligence. Or… We can trust our instincts, life experience, and common sense - and carry on without taking the time and expending the extra effort. One choice might slow you down, and might prove a waste of time. The other choice might save you time & effort, but might come back to bite you later.

So which one is right? What should you do? Well…. you could argue that it’s almost always worth it to just take the time and “do it right.” But then again, you could also argue that if it’s not necessary- you’re just wasting time. Perhaps the best solution is a bit of a compromise. Maybe it’s best to take each situation individually. You might have the experience to know that some extra process would be a waste of time. But be honest with yourself. Don’t just be lazy.

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