It’s About Time

pie chartWhere does the time go? Now we know. A study broke down exactly how much time American adults spend with digital media. On a typical day, we pass 11 hours watching TV, using our smartphones and browsing the internet, among other activities. The number-one source of electronic media is live TV, which we spend more than five hours watching per day. In second place is radio, which we listen to for two hours and 46 minutes a day. Smartphones come in third (one hour and seven minutes), followed by internet on a PC, timeshifted TV (shows recorded on our DVRs), video game consoles, DVD/Blu-Ray players and multimedia devices.  

Muy Caliente

GuacamoleDipThis may finally get people to take climate change seriously. Chipotle warns that environmental factors may force them to stop offering guacamole! The company says climate change could eventually affect the availability and prices of certain crops. By threatening to remove some beloved items from the menu- including guacamole and some salsas- Chipotle seems to be using its influence to make a political statement about climate change, while promoting itself at the same time. Environmental destruction is one thing, but a nationwide guacamole shortage? That would be a disaster.

Testing, Testing…

sat1The Scholastic Aptitude Test, better known as the SAT, is undergoing some major changes for the first time in nearly a decade. The updated college entrance exam aims to more accurately represent what high school students are learning in school. Among the changes, the test will return to its 1600-point scoring format, which was changed in 2004. And, there will no longer be a penalty for wrong answers- a policy that discouraged test-takers from guessing. Certain vocabulary words will be replaced with more commonly-used words. The essay portion will be made optional. Math questions will focus on problem-solving and algebra. And for the first time, students will have the option of taking the SAT on a computer. Some educators believe the new test will be less stressful for students. They have plenty of that to look forward to in the real world.

Big Problem

TARGETConsumers are sizing up Target’s selection of plus-size clothes, and they’re not happy. Several shoppers around the country have noticed recently that their local Target stores seem to have done away with their plus-size sections entirely. After multiple complaints, a spokesperson eventually responded, claiming that Target is “absolutely not exiting the plus-size business.” In fact, they’re revamping their offering of plus-size duds, and experiencing a slight delay with the spring collection. For now, plus-size shoppers can either be patient, or visit Target.com for a wider selection. But the controversy raises a commonly-debated issue about plus-size clothing- specifically, why larger shoppers are so often overlooked.

Rooms with a View

kids-and-tv-commercial-thumb-500x403-56155More than half of children between the ages of 10 and 14 have TVs in their bedrooms. And while this may make them some of the most popular kids in the neighborhood, it appears to be bad for their health. A study found that having a TV in the bedroom is associated with one extra pound of weight gain per year, compared to kids without TVs in their rooms. It’s a well-documented fact that too much sedentary behavior- for instance, sitting around watching TV – is unhealthy and can contribute to piling on the pounds. Experts warn it’s not just TVs that pose a risk- laptops, tablets and smartphones can all contribute to weight gain over time as well.

#toomuchTV

Courtesy Call

phonesmannersA new etiquette survey reveals the top dos and don’ts of mobile phone use. The majority of people surveyed said they know someone who exhibits bad smartphone behaviors…and many are probably guilty of these transgressions themselves. So hold the phone and check your manners!


Do…

…Consider your ringtone and its volume.

…Have conversations about sensitive subjects in private.

…Be careful while walking and texting.

…Turn your phone off during funerals, weddings, movies etc.

…Mind your language when talking on the phone in public.

…Surrender your phone when you’re drunk to avoid embarrassment.


Don’t…

…Use your phone while on the toilet (almost half of people admit to doing this! Here’s a tip- the echo of the bathroom totally gives you away).

…Talk on the phone while making a transaction at a store, coffee shop, bank etc.

…Be overly distracted by your phone while you’re physically with another person.

…Let more than an hour go by before responding to a text.

…Break up with someone via text message (ouch).

…Overdo it with the abbreviations, like LOL.

…Use your phone while eating a meal with family or friends.

…Text or email in all caps.

Shop Talk

iStock_000019842250SmallWe use our phones and other mobile devices for pretty much everything these days. But although experts believe their popularity will only continue to grow, a study found almost three quarters of online shopping purchases are still made from PCs. Tablets are the second most popular devices for internet retail at 14.6%, followed by smartphones at 12.2%. The study didn’t determine exactly what percentage of online shopping purchases are made during working hours (yep, we’re on to you!).

Fantastic Plastic

spokane-plastic-surgeryMore than 15 million Americans went under the knife last year in the name of beauty. That’s according to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, who also broke down the numbers to reveal the top procedures. Boob jobs are still on top, with 290,000 breast augmentations performed last year. Coming in second were nose jobs at 221,000. And the third most popular procedure was eyelid surgery at 216,000. While bigger boobs are a perennial favorite of the surgically inclined, professionals expect more patients to request butt augmentations and neck lifts in the next year- in fact, they’re already on the rise.

The Stuff of Legends

PW HATHow much would you pay for, say, the red bowtie Jared Leto rocked to accept his Oscar on Sunday? A new study looks at exactly why celebrity memorabilia is so valuable to us. Researchers say that when it comes to famous people, even the most reasonable among us believe in magic- that is, we believe celebs lend a so-called magical essence to their belongings. That’s why celebrity stuff can fetch thousands upon thousands of bucks. Experts explain the concept of contagion as “a form of magical thinking in which people believe that a person’s immaterial qualities or essence can be transferred to an object through physical contact.”   Because of this, normal folks are especially drawn to items that the famous person touched a lot.  And speaking of celebrity memorabilia, if you were wondering how much Pharrell Williams’ giant hat would go for, now you know: Arby’s just paid $44,100 for it on eBay (FYI, the dough is going to charity).

Breakup Timetable?

BROKEN HEARTHow long does it take you to cut someone loose? It takes women an average of six days to decide if it’s right. It takes guys an entire month. Most women feel life’s too short for bad relationships and when they’ve decided it’s time to end it, they just cut the rope. It seems guys always feel there’s a chance of things working out. As for the actual breakup, almost 80% of women say a quick, honest talk- like ripping off a Band-Aid- is the way to go, while nearly 90% of men plan a “careful exit strategy”. Except we don’t pay attention to it and usually end up getting caught halfway through it!