My main hobbies are music, games, travel, books, movies, and exercise. Just like everyone else. Except maybe the exercise; some people don't care about that. And I suppose the games are mostly a guy thing.
So I'm a geek, yeah, but also a worldly one. That is, when I get out of my room.
1. Indoor Hobbies
- My favorite music is early 80's post-punk: The Fall, Julian Cope, Chameleons, Buzzcocks, etc. I've also been writing and recording my own songs (as Tripecac and Trex) since 1980. Feelings of creative isolation led me to create UNME, a forum for casual musicians. I also manage several music-related web sites.
- I read a lot, mostly non-fiction these days. I read history for fun and technical books for work. I outgrew fantasy and sci-fi a few years ago, but still consider Tolkien my favorite author.
- Recommendations, observations, and links pertaining to my favorite (fiction) author.
- My own stories, essays, and journals.
- I don't play games as much as I used to, but I still like turn-based classics like Civilization and the Roguelikes. I used to write games, but needing to program and design every day at work ruins the fun, so I've cooled off creatively in that area.
- Web Sites
- I don't know if working on web sites is what I call "fun", but it's what I do almost every day before and after work, and I don't get paid for it. I look at it more as an educational endeavor than a hobby. It's an investment, and so far has paid off, because my recent jobs have been web-based.
- I don't like TV or going to a theater, so I rent lots of DVDs (hooray for Netflix!). These days, at least half of what I watch is foreign. Some favorites are The Seven Samurai, This Is Spinal Tap, Lord of the Rings, and Jaws.
2. Outdoor Hobbies (i.e., That Awful Stuff Called Sunlight)
- My favorite place to travel (and live) is the Pacific Northwest. I love Bellingham WA (where I live now), Alaska, and the Canadian Rockies. I also like to document, so I have tons of photos and notes from my trips; I've been putting them online gradually.
- I first started jogging regularly in 1996 and went from 180 lbs to 130 lbs. Once I started, I couldn't stop. I jogged to work, to the store, to my parents' house a few miles away. Running became my principle means of around-town transportation. I've gone weeks or even months without getting inside a car. I usually wear Tevas (except in deep snow) and a backpack. To counteract boredom, I trained myself to read while I jog. I've done some solo marathons (~30 miles) but my usual route is 2-3 hours. I'd love to find a way to make music while I jog!
- My family likes to bike, though usually not around home due to the hills. Instead, we'd go up to Northern Virginia and the C&O Canal or down to picturesque Williamsburg and Jamestown. The furthest I've biked in one day was with my dad; we did 100 miles (a "century") along the C&O canal, which is mostly gravel with lots of mud, rocks, and roots! In Bellingham, I don't bike very often, except I do go on an annual 40+ mile loop to the Skagit Country Tulip Festival.
- I join my family every year on the annual ski trip. We usually go to the Rockies but have also done Whistler BC and Vermont. My interest in downhill has been replaced by a love of cross-country. I prefer exertion to risk, so XC suits me perfectly!
- I played on a country-club tennis team for a few years in high school, took a couple tennis classes in college, and played once or twice a month in grad school. After I moved to Bellingham I stopped playing; it's not a very hermit-friendly sport!
- I love sea kayaking, but don't get to do it often. Renting is expensive and owning requires a place to store it. It's something I can get into more once I get a house.
- Other Sports:
- Aside from swimming (6 years) and soccer (5 years) when I was a kid, I also like an occasional game of basketball (but I'm not very good) or golf (even worse). I also used to be into rollerblading and karate, and was horrible at both!