Thursday, July 05, 2007

Saving Money on Entertainment

"Entertain me," this is what America seems to be all about these days. I fall into this category just like most everyone else. Typically, we can go out to eat, see a movie, go to a club, or do whatever it is that entertains you. Of course all these things cost money. These are some things I do to save money on entertainment.

Game on. It's easy for me to get my game on. Personally I find video games to be one of the most enjoyable pass times out there, and it doesn't have to be expensive. Most people already have a computer, and there are a plethora of free online games. I personally like to play Space Penguin (requires flash) and Sudoku. There are a number of Sudoku site, that is one of my favorites. Other games work out to be amazingly cost efficient as well, like World of Warcraft (WoW). I hear so may people say, "Oh I can't afford the monthly payment." Which is sure sign someone didn't do their homework. I pay for two WoW accounts at $15 a month. I pay for them in six month intervals because you get a discount. After tax, in Texas, six months of WoW comes to $84.37. For $168.74 I can entertain myself and my girlfriend every night for 180 days (94 cents a day). No, we don't play every night.

There are arguments gaming cost more. For example you may have a computer, but not a computer than can run WoW. A few smart upgrades can make just about any computer, even one a few years old, worthy of most games. Other games, namely single player games, work out pretty well. Half Life 2 cost me $50 and kept me tied up for the better part of a month. Much more cost effective than a two hour move.

Outside of gaming, but still using computers, blogging is an effective way to keep busy. If you have a blog people read you might even make money off that with Google's Adsense. Personally I started a blog to work on my writing skills, but I find it a fun way to spend a few hours. Granted my interest in it wanes and ebbs, but like with most things you have to have an interest in something to be entertained by it. Sometimes that interest can be manually sparked; sometimes it can't.

I also don't go to every new movie release out there either. Sometimes thats a hard one to follow. Right now all my co-workers are telling me how great Die Hard 4 was, and how spectacular Transformers was (even though the reviews say it isn't so hot). I'm sure they're all worth watching, but I can easily wait for them to come out on DVD. Since I wait for things to come out on DVD, I watch the new rental release list. They may not be new, but they're new to me and I get to watch them in the comfort of my own home without the chance of a crying kid behind me. Sometimes I do make exceptions. Like when I can tell my girlfriend is frustrated we haven't gone out in a while. Mathematically, this comes down to seeing a movie in the theater once a month. This month will be Transformers. We plan to see it tomorrow. I also do my best to stay away from going on opening day, and eat something before you go because their hot dogs are way over priced.

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