It saddens me that we have come to a place in our lives where we can't live without being "connected" to everything and everyone 24 hours a day; cellphones, internet, 24 hour news channels. We don't take time to do things anymore. We want everything handed to us in compact form and ready-made, we don't want to work for anything and we need to be constantly entertained by electronics. We don't even want to get out of our car anymore to buy liquor, food or do banking. (wow I am getting old). It's sad.
All that being said, here is a list of cheap and mostly free activities you can do, getting back to the old ways to entertain yourselves.
List of Free or Cheap Retro Activities
- Play a boardgame or cards. (poker, blackjack, crazy 8's)
- Listen to a talk radio show or play; they still have them! University stations usually have really interesting stuff to listen to.
- Read the entire local or national newspaper with your family/partner over a cup of coffee and discuss its contents.
- Host a pot luck for friends. You can even have a theme like: Mexican, Indian, play some corresponding music!
- Attend a free yoga or fitness class. (You can get free gym passes or a trial yoga class in most places).
- Go for a walk but leave your Ipod at home. Pay attention to the scenery and people around you and appreciate your surroundings.
- Watch a late-night old movie on TV and make popcorn on the stove.
- Visit free public places like museums and libraries; take out old videos or DVDs, loan out a good book. Libraries also offer free workshops throughout the year. Some museums still have free days, check your city.
- Check your local travel bureau or free entertainment magazine for free activities and events in your town; such as specific festivals and free music events.
- Get a bunch of people together and go for a drive. Pack lunches and drinks, stop somewhere to eat. If it's wintertime, you can eat in the car.
- Do crafty things like paper mache, hemp bracelets, ice cube candles, perzines, baking, find an old chemistry set and play with it, sew, knit, crochet, plant seeds or re-pot plants, paint or draw..the choices are endless.
- Write poetry or something in your journal, the old fashioned way: with a pen and paper.
- In winter, go outside and make a snow-person or in summer, play marbles (yes it can be totally cheesy as adults but still fun, get on your bike and sit on the grass with friends and talk.
- As teenie as this is, have a sleepover with friends and watch scary movies.
- Have a cooking party, everyone collectively makes dinner including appetizers and dessert. Cooking is so much more fun with more people!
- Make homemade wine or beer. It's not that hard. The internet has DIY punk style recipes where you don't need to use all that fancy equipment!
- Get on the phone and call your parents or friends who live away. Most people have unlimited long distance plans these days.
- Play street hockey or basketball
- Play truth or dare (if you're younger, you might not know what this is, look it up!)
- Cuddle with someone you care about.
It's not that hard to come up with fun stuff to do that doesn't include using your computers, 300 channel satellite dish TV, X-Box, iPods or Blackberries. So put those away and go have some super groovy retro fun!
By Lisa from Halifax, NS