Wow, it just doesn't get any better. 65 college basketball teams scrambling for a single spot at the top, wall to wall, floor to ceiling, rafter to rafter - ahem, sorry - anyway, lots and lots of television coverage. But, before you settle in for the long haul, you take inventory...
Hmm... Beer, pretzels, chips - check. Backup supply of beer, pretzels, chips - check.
With inventory complete, you hunker down in your leather recliner with optional handle-free operation, pop open a cold one and grab the first of a never-ending supply of deep fried snacks. You tilt yourself back, click the remote and there it is - the Miracle of March Madness on a 103-inch flat panel plasma screen. It's enough to make a grown man cry...
Unfortunately, shedding the bitter tears of defeat may be the most exercise many men get during March Madness. For those with weak wills March Madness presents an overpowering temptation to abandon ones sanity, family and all non-fried foods.
The art of the couch potato, however, is not limited to March. The Sourcebook for Teaching Science provides these compelling statistics about American's television watching habits:
-99% of U.S. households own televisions
-TV sets are on an average of 6 hours and 47 minutes per day
-66% of Americans eat their dinners in front of the television
-Americans spend a combined 250 billion hours watching TV annually
-Children spend 3.5 minutes in meaningful conversation with their parents each week
-Children spend 1,680 minutes watching television each week
...Ah. What a month - your team got blown out in the first round, but it was still a great tournament. And, really, for just the second day since the championship, you're feeling pretty good. The blinding pain behind your eyes is starting to respond to the morphine drip, you made it to the kitchen without assistance last night and, best of all, you were able to recognize two of your three - or is it four? - children this morning. Yes, indeed - what a great month...To read more about the television watching habits of Americans, see this from the Sourcebook for Teaching Science. To read recommendations on healthy physical activities and diet, see this from the CDC's Division of Nutrition and Physical Activity.