How American Men can live 11% more.
Nope, that’s not a typo. Today I’m going to tell you how American men can all live 11% more.
In 2013 the Bureau of Labor Statistics released a report on how Americans spend their time, and the results we’re absolutely shocking. No, cancel that.
They were pathetic.
On a weekday, your average American man spends 2.69 hours watching TV. On weekends that number increases to 3.67. That means American men are spending more than 11% of their time (you do the math, divide 2.69 by 24 hours in a day) each week of the year sitting on their asses in front of the TV.
Now I’ll grant you that a case could be made that watching TV is living. Obviously in the literal sense, but also figuratively, TV is fun and entertaining and film is the “American art form”. Right?
My problem isn’t with watching TV. I mean, yeah we’re doing too much of it and we should cut that crap out but that’s a topic for another paragraph. My problem is with watching almost three hours of TV every single day.
Let’s begin with the ads. Every hour you spend watching TV is actually only about 45 minutes long. The other fifteen minutes belong to advertisers. That means if you watch for three hours a day, you’re spending 45 minutes of your day every single day watching boner pill ads. No wonder so many men have erectile issues! If you do it every single day for the rest of your life, you will have spent greater than three percent of your time on this planet watching commercials.
Three whole percent of your entire life. Gone. Don’t even try to argue that chunk of time spent watching commercials is life well lived, that argument is horseshit and you know it.
You could have spent that three percent of your life traveling, talking to your kids or your spouse or your imaginary friend, Jim, or learning a new skill or hobby. You could have spent three extra percent of your life fucking. Literally, really, truly fucking. Hell, you could’ve spent that time rubbing one out and it still would’ve been better used. You could have spent that extra three percent of your life cooking and eating bacon. Really fellas, think about the many tradeoffs here.
And let’s rewind because I’m not conceding that bullshit point earlier about TV watching being a worthwhile endeavor for that amount of time even without the ads.
Let me paint you a picture. You wake up on Saturday morning, make breakfast and plop down to watch “a little” television while you eat. Six hours later you don’t remember deciding to spend all day watching college football but you did. And you don’t recall getting up to grab the Doritos, but your hands are covered in cheese dust.
Feel like a man in that moment? No, of course not. You feel like a kindergartener. No self-discipline. No self-control. Not an ounce of manhood in that entire experience.
The solution to this, like most of the problems we face today, is to take control of your life.
Ask some hard questions gents.
Who’s running things, you or your remote control?
Are you turning on the TV because you want to watch something specific (the news, a specific football game, a particular TV show or movie), or are you hitting the button out of pure reflex and you’ll “find something”?
Does it really give you joy, or do you turn it on to hide from your work, chores or other problems?
Are you proud of the amount of TV you watch? If you had a son, would you want him to spend his time the way you do? Does it fulfill you, spending that big a chunk of your life staring at a screen?
Let’s recap with those numbers, which again, are averages. Some of you watch even more.
11% of your entire life is spent watching television.
3% of your entire life is spent watching the commercials.