I always loved easy classes in school. People who specifically seek out easy classes get a bad rap, especially amongst those who consider themselves particularly intelligent, and I think that's undeserved. It was so rare that I got to study things that I wanted to study in school, or that I got to work on what I wanted to at work (working the deli counter was way more fun than battering chicken). Taking easy classes or taking shortcuts on assignments allowed me to get the less interesting things out of my life as quickly as possible, and let me focus on the things that I actually cared about. Given the choice between (1) a poetry class that required a total of a couple hours' worth of effort and a class that was not painful to attend, and (2) a computer science class that was undoubtedly taught by an incompetent professor and covered topics ranging from boring to totally unengaging, I would choose the first one every time. Being almost wholly self-taught, I haven't really gained much respect for computer science professors. I'd much rather just study things that I like.
One of my best teachers, actually, was Mr. Janssen, a high school algebra teacher who I went to be with for a few hours each week in elementary school. He didn't know much about programming, but enough to teach a high school introductory class. What I liked about having him as a teacher is that I got to work on essentially whatever I wanted. He was just there to spur me on, give suggestions, bounce ideas off of, and so forth. He was also the one who inspired me to write crossword software. That was his ultimate challenge—he had never come up with a good way of having a computer build a crossword puzzle, and said that he would have respect for anyone who could do it. (The other impetus for making software to do it for me was the experience of typing up crosswords into Excel as a TA for Mr. Kingery, my history teacher.)
This is one reason why I fear that I'll never be as happy programming at work as I am just for myself. When I program for me, I work on exactly what I want to work on. When I program at work there's always someone higher up who has final say. But I like being final say. I like to eliminate things from my life that I see as low-value, because it gives me more time to work on stuff I care about, and play games. That was really easy before college. It was sometimes easy during college. It hasn't been easy since I've started working full-time.
There's nothing inherently wrong with doing things the easy way. Just because I don't want to waste time on whatever you want me to do doesn't mean I don't want to learn or grow or contribute.