Figuratively Speaking by John MacIntyre

Figuratively Speaking For January 11, 2015

Age at which a child's habits regarding chores, studying and media consumption do not change without parental intervention, according to findings by the Learning Habit: 9

Percentage of parents who report that their child will quit when asked to perform a strenuous or difficult task: 40

Number of minutes of homework per grade in school that was positively correlated with children's grade point averages (excess time on academic homework showed no additional benefit): 10

Source: Good Parent Inc.

Percentage of American workers who are late for work at least once a week, according to a survey by YouGov: 19

Percentage who are never late: 48

Source: YouGov.

Ranks of frozen pipes (average claim $18,000), hail damage (average claim $10,000) and tree collapse ($6,000) on the list of the top three costliest winter weather claims, according to The Hartford insurance analysis: 1, 2, 3

Source: Hartford Insurance.

Percentage of Americans with debt who say they will never get out of it, according to a new report: 18

On average, age at which Americans expect to achieve debt-free status (including credit card debt, car loans, student loans, mortgages and other types of debt): 53


Percentage of men who are likely to admit to having passed gas around others, compared with 30 percent of women, according to findings by Omnibus for YouGov: 41

Percentage of women who are likely to admit to having talked to someone while watching a film, compared to 28 percent of men: 42

Source: YouGov.

On average, percentage increase in car insurance premiums after a claim, according to an report: 38

Average percentage increase in homeowner's insurance premiums after a claim: 9

Percentage of Americans who think it's unfair that denied claims can cause car and homeowner's insurance rates to rise, which can even be true of potential claims that were never filed but were discussed with an insurance agent: 84


Population of Florida in 1910, according to the Population Reference Bureau: 752,619

Population of Florida in 2013: 19,552,860

Expected date when the Sunshine State is believed to have passed the Empire State in population: July 2014

Source: Population Reference Bureau.

Year that James Smith, a restaurant owner in Poughkeepsie, New York, cooked up the first batch of cough drops, according to the U.S. Census Bureau: 1847

Estimated number of drugstores in the country, selling some $11.7 billion worth of cough drops and other nonprescription medicines annually: 40,000

Source: U.S. Census Bureau.

Ranks of Vail and Aspen, Colorado, and Park City, Utah, on the list of the top ski resorts in the U.S., according to members of the American Society of Travel Agents: 1, 2, 3

Ranks of Whistler, Canada, Zermatt, Switzerland, and St. Moritz, Switzerland, on the list of the top international ski resorts: 1, 2, 3

Source: American Society of Travel Agents.

Estimated number of hours that today's children spend per week in extracurricular activities, according to a Liberty Mutual study: 20

Percentage of parents who say they drive and/or host other children in their home: 83

Source: Liberty Mutual Insurance.

Idle Thought

"If only I may grow: firmer, simpler -- quieter, warmer." -- Dag Hammarskjold, Secretary General of the United Nations 1953-1961, Nobel laureate

(Readers can contact John MacIntyre at