As I read about the record-breaking sales at EA, Entertainment Arts, the accompanying photo said it all. Young males, sitting. And that’s also what struck me during a recent campus visit to my Alma Mater. As my son and I toured the dorm, my dorm, I was transported back to a time when the courtyard was filled with frisbees and volley ball games, the net hooked between an oak tree and the window ledge of the first floor Girl’s bathroom. Alas, no sign of that now. Instead, on a warm sunny day, students were inside, a couple of girls on their laptops or iPhones, and the boys engaged in video games. The days of arranging who brings the mini-fridge, and stereo, are replaced by who brings what game system: X-box, wii, playstation, the flat screen TV, even though there is a flat screen TV on each floor supplied by the dorm. As far as the eye can see, a spoiled and sedentary student body.
No surprise then, that the CDC reported a decade rise in obesity rates among males. Coincidence that males are also the leading consumers/players of virtual/sedentary activities? I think not. I’ve been clamoring for vice related tax on all products that decrease activity and productivity as this will wind up costing us tenfold in health care and in global innovative capital. The only meaningful contribution from Angry birds, Mafia wars, and facebook is to their owners post-IPO checkbooks.