Today, leisure time in our society is much different from the way it was twenty years ago. For many of Americans, leisure time doesn t exist at all. Magazine ads and TV commercials show how technology has affected the way people spend their past time. People are running either errands leaving no time at all to relax, or they are most likely spending their past time watching television, playing video games, or surfing the net.
For example, the American Heart Association placed ads in many magazines encouraging people to limit their time that is spent watching television. The ad was simply an overweight man sitting on a couch in front of a TV with a bold caption above him reading, Get Off the Couch. The point that the AHA was trying to get through was that spending a lot of time on the couch watching TV could be unhealthy.
The television is now a part of every home. Years ago, a television in the livingroom was considered a luxury, today a house without a TV is rare. The television is part of our everyday lives. To show how big a factor TV is in America today, you can compare the number of channels you had ten years ago to the number you have now. For many people, the number might not have changed, but for most Americans, it certainly has. Today there are satellite dishes that can receive more than two hundred channels, there is digital cable that can do the same, and the basic cable that most people receive can get more than a hundred channels. The satellite dish itself has evolved. Ten years ago, you would need to purchase another acre of land to put up a dish that couldn t receive a quarter of the channels that the new, more compact dishes can.
Many people don t realize how much time they spend watching TV. Young kids watch hours of TV after school, and adults watch after work. They want to catch their favorite program or movie, and when they know that they won t be able to, they set the VCR to record it so they can watch it later. Many people find time to every day to watch TV, no matter how busy their schedules are. Although TV may become unhealthy if too much time is spent watching it, it does provide a means for relaxation. People just need to be careful about how much time they spend relaxing.
Another way people spend their leisure time is by playing video games. There are numerous commercials on every day for video games. One particular commercial showed a teen-aged boy playing his Sony Playstation until his eyes were popping out of his head. This commercial showed how this specific game was irresistible, maybe even addictive. There are many games out there that have this affect on people. Hours upon hours are spent playing video games. A lot of kids can play the same day all day and all night without being fatigued, but most have many more to choose from. There is Sony Playstation, Nintendo 64, and Sega Dreamcast just to name a few. There are also hundreds of games available for any PC. There are more than enough games to keep any young kid entertained for a lifetime. Although video games are most popular to the younger generation, many adults are beginning to catch onto the craze. Most adults are probably taking the games a lot more seriously than the kids are. There are bets being placed on the games, mainly sports games.
Video games have come a long way in the last couple decades. Twenty years ago the hottest thing out was Atari. This was the first machine that allowed people to insert a cartridge which enabled them to different games of their choice. Some of the famous games included Donkey Kong and Pac Man. The makers of these games didn t realize what would become of the video gaming industry later. Today companies are competing to come out with a system with the best graphics and sound to make their games seem the most realistic. Today systems also allow people to do more than just play games. You can listen to CD s, watch DVD s, and even access the internet.
The internet is another passion for Americans today. It has probably affected us more than any other new technology has. There is a commercial for American Online that shows how a typical family is affected by the internet. A man goes to the computer to get on the net, but he finds that his wife is already using it. He waits a few hours to let her finish, then comes back to take his turn, but disappointingly, he finds that his daughter has already beat him to it. He then waits a little while longer then returns to find his son is already there with his friends. Now he is upset, so he makes them leave so that he can finally get his chance on the net. Today there are instances like this in many houses. Everybody wants to get on the net. The internet is the biggest craze sweeping America, but what do most people use it for?
The internet was designed to be the informational superhighway . It allows people to access almost any information – security permitting. But finding information isn t the only thing that the web is used for. To list everything that the internet can do is almost impossible. To make it simple, if you can think of it, you can probably do it on the net. One of the most popular uses for the internet is chatting. Although people can have access to just about anything they ever wanted ti know, they decide to use he world wide web to talk to people. There are hundreds of chat rooms on the web, most of which are free. This allows people to talk to other people anywhere in the world. People of all ages use chat rooms. Chat rooms are characterized in many different ways – by age groups, marriage status, interests, and even sexual orientation. Many people have certain buddies that they chat with. There are devices that let you know when your buddies are online then allow you to chat with them.
The internet is also used for playing games. Like chatting, there are different game rooms on the net in which you can enter to play with people from all over the world. Some of the most popular games include Bingo and card games. These game rooms have a separate screen which lets people chat while they play. Most games are just for fun, but many others have a money prize. The money that is given away as prizes is from business which buy spaces on the net to place their ads and add a link to their site. This way many sites can provide their services to people for free.
For most people, there is a lot of time spent watching TV, playing video games, and surfing the net, but there are many others who cannot find time for these activities. Many people have schedules that are too busy to let them find time for themselves. Most of the day is spent working or going to school, and the rest if the day is spent running errands. People in America today are working harder than ever. They are leaving their selves very little time for rest and relaxation. Years ago, a forty hour work week was unheard of. Today working forty hours in a week is minimal. Many people work twelve to sixteen hour days, five or six days a week. This leaves very little time to do anything else. When these people are not working, they are do other things like going shopping or handling their finances. Working like this, leaving no time for rest can, in some cases, be rewarding, but most of the time it s not.
In conclusion, leisure time in our society is much different from the way it was twenty years ago. For many of Americans, leisure time doesn t exist at all. Magazine ads and TV commercials show how technology has affected the way people spend their past time. People are running either errands leaving no time at all to relax, or they are most likely spending their past time watching television, playing video games, or surfing the net.