They say the best things in life are free. I agree with this entirely. I thought this would be a good topic to discuss since the economy is so bad.
A good book is a must have and while I prefer to buy my own books, one can find tons of interesting and entertaining material at any given library. Reading is a wonderful way to satisfy both curiosity and boredom. It can also spark new interests in nearly any area. It can also inspire readers to become writers, which is also extremely enjoyable and also free.
Music is also very enjoyable and free after an initial investment in an instrument. Once an instrument is obtained, one should be able to self-teach with patience and persistence. There are numerous websites that have tabs, chords and lyrics to hundreds of songs by hundreds of artists. I play guitar, and I usually use ultimateguitar.com. I have learned dozens of songs from that site alone. I am fairly sure there are some sites that offer free sheet music, and you might be able to find sheet music at your library. There are websites about learning the basics of certain instruments, and others about music theory (which is worth learning). Listening is also free through Pandora or just plain old radio (although Pandora has fewer ads).
Taking long walks is a delightful activity. All you need is your feet (or in my case, wheels). Taking a walk is the best way to clear your head, come up with new ideas, pray and exercise. Walking with a friend is even better because it’s a wonderful way to have meaningful conversations and get to know each other better. Unfortunately, my walks often lead me to ice cream.
“Kill The Sheep” is a twisted game invented by my brother and his friends in French class. Any number of people can play, but there really needs to be an even number. All you need is a piece of paper (several is better) and at least one writing/drawing implement. Each player or team of players takes turns attacking and defending the sheep. If the attacker attacks the sheep with something that can not be countered then they win. If the defender sets up a defense that can not be penetrated then they win. The most important thing to remember is that anything goes, which is why the game can often take a very long time and many pieces of paper.
Another ridiculous game that my father and I invented is “All That.” All you need is a twisted sense of humor and the ability to speak. The game starts out when one person says “You’re a square.” The second person counters with “You’re a triangle” Then the first person says, “You’re an angle” then, “You’re a line segment,” then “You’re a speck.” After that all you have to do is come up with what happens to the speck. For example, my father once started out with “Well, you’re a speck that got thrown into a volcano which erupted. At which point you got shot into outer space, pinged off Pluto, bounced back into Earth’s atmosphere, landed in the street and were run over by an ugly green minivan.” Then the next person counters with “Well, all that and….” and continues the abuse of the speck. The game only ends when the players get bored. The speck can’t die.
Campfires are also very fun. Every year when we go camping, my cousins and sit around the fire sometimes until after midnight, and exchange ridiculous stories. We always try to one-up each others’ stories with more ridiculous ones. These stories are usually fantastic and nonsensical but still very entertaining, and we always have a lot of laughs. Of course you can always have a fire in your own backyard. That way you don’t even have to go anywhere.