I have defined some of the words (underlined) in the blog post, which you can add to your Personal Dictionary. Click on the Excel icon to download the word list to your PC or mobile device, which you can thereafter import into your Personal Dictionary. They are also listed below.
Scroll down to the bottom for links to a video, crossword and word search using words from this post.
Nowadays – At the present time or in these modern times
Fellow – Sharing a particular activity, quality, or condition with someone or something
Hobby – An activity that someone enjoys doing in their free time, especially one that is done regularly
Pastime – An activity that someone enjoys doing in their free time for relaxation or pleasure
Conclusion – The end or final part of something, especially a statement or argument
Idle – Doing nothing or being inactive
Musing – A period of thought or reflection, especially when done quietly and alone
Prediction – A statement about what is going to happen in the future
Prophecy – A statement that is believed to reveal what will happen in the future
Addicted – Having an uncontrollable desire for something, especially a harmful substance such as drugs or alcohol
Haute cuisine – A style of cooking that is considered to be the highest and most sophisticated form of culinary art
Angling – The sport or pastime of fishing with a rod and line, especially for pleasure
Former – Referring to something that existed or happened in the past
Habitually – Doing something frequently or as a regular practice
I can remember when I was school – although admittedly it is a distant memory nowadays – my teachers telling me and my fellow students, that we would have more leisure time in the future. In their opinions, we would work less and have more time for our hobbies and pastimes. I’ve got no idea how they came to this conclusion, but forty years later, I’m sorry to say that they got it wrong.
Unlike some of my other idle musings, I actually did some top research work for this post, and discovered that on average, the people of the UK work around 36 hours a week, which is actually about an hour more than when my teachers made their predictions all those years ago. However, I want to concentrate on what we do in the time we have, rather than dissing my teachers for their incorrect prophecies.
Shockingly, people spend nearly half of their free time watching television. It shouldn’t come as too big of a surprise I suppose, because we have always turned to the little square box – which is neither square nor little anymore – for entertainment. Furthermore, with the increase in popularity of the so-called streamers; Netflix, Amazon Prime, Disney + et al, British people have become addicted to watching the many series, these providers have to offer. In fact, the phrase, “what are you currently watching on Netflix”, has got to be one of the most used small-talk openers in recent years.
Worryingly, if people aren’t looking at a big screen, they are looking at smaller ones, on their computers, tablets and mobiles. Unbelievably, a lot of people do this while they are watching their television. This practice is known as two-screening.
I’m glad to say it’s not all bad news. The pub is still the number one meeting place for the majority of people in the UK. Likewise, another popular activity is hosting friends at home. Eating out took a knock during the pandemic time, but nevertheless, over £300m per week is spent in restaurants, ranging from fast food to haute cuisine.
When I was a boy, angling was the most popular sport, and during my research I was amazed to learn that it had dropped to 19th place in the list of outdoor hobbies. I was even more surprised to read that swimming was the number one activity and that football was only in 4th place.
However, keep fit and dance were high on the list and the former is what I have planned to do now, so will have to finish here.
If you’d like to spend a little longer looking at your screen, perhaps you’d like to watch a video of an amusing short story I wrote about leisure time. Have fun!
To test your knowledge, why not do a crossword puzzle, using words from this text?
Click here for instructions on how to play.
To test your knowledge, why not do a word search puzzle, using words from this text?
Click here for instructions on how to play.
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