December 19, 2006 Portrait of the Average American
The Census Bureau just released their 2007 Statistical Abstract. The abstract contains over 1,300 tables creating a fascinating portrait of what Americans look like (fascinating to those who love data and tables). Here are some interesting results from the Census Bureau data:
- Americans are the most overweight people on the planet
- Average American consumes 52 gallons of soda a year and 23 gallons of bottled water
- Average American spends 4 ½ hours a day watching TV; 50 minutes a day reading the newspaper.
- 68% of American households have cable TV, up from 19% in 1980
- 207 million have cell phones, only 5 million in 1990
- In 2005, 75% or college freshman said their primary objective was to be financially very well off
- In 1970, 79% said their goal was developing a meaningful philosophy of life
- In 1980 only 12% of doctors were women, today 27% are.
- 25% of households under the age of 25 own homes up from 8.5% from 1985
- Of those Americans with Internet access:
- 97 million get their news online
- 91 million buy or make travel reservations
- 39 million read someone else’s blog
- 13 million created their own blog
Check here to read a recent New York Times article quoting Robert Putnam regarding this data. You might remember Putnam, the author of Bowling Alone, who spoke at our 2004 Annual Conference. Oh and I must note (due to my Idaho heritage) that potatoes still remain the most consumed vegetable by Americans.