Hobbies, interests and passions

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Post by reboot on Thu Mar 05, 2015 11:33 am

This is a thread to list all of your hobbies, habits, passions, current fandom's, etc.. Who knows? There might actually be another Hungarian nose whistler* on here.

Here are mine:

Reader - I will read everything even books on topics I am not so interested in if they are sitting there. Favorite genres are sci-fi, dystopian fiction, fantasy, espionage, horror, suspense, history, current events, foreign policy, economics, genocide studies, 19th century- pre WWII travel writing and Anglophone literature.

Movies and TV - I do not have time to watch everything I want, but am a documentary, horror (mostly of the supernatural/suspense type), espionage a la Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy or the Americans, fantasy, sci-fi, mysteries, and Anthony Bourdain. Country of origin is irrelevant.

Games - another hobby I do not have enough time for but am trying to get back into after a hiatus. Like board and video games and rediscovering RPGs. Tend to favor puzzle, text based, story heavy games.

Human rights - especially immigrant/refugee, LGBTQ, women's and worker's rights. This is part of my job (the other part is services to refugees) so it is kind of awesome that I get to work in what I love.

Hiking - I like this so much I even volunteer with the parks department.

Art history - I especially like Northern Renaissance

Architecture - Belle Epoque, Art Deco, and the weird crap dictators build.

Languages - I am trying to see how many languages I can learn to speak incompetently since I am terrible at languages but love learning them

EDIT: I should add travel, although for me it is such an integral part of my life that I do not think of it as "doing" something

PS: So many of you are artistically talented!! I am jealous. The only thing more lacking than my language abilities are my artistic/craft ones Smile

Last edited by reboot on Thu Mar 05, 2015 5:27 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Post by kleenestar on Thu Mar 05, 2015 12:31 pm

This is awesome!!

Reading - oh yeah, I read just about anything, though I read a lot more fiction than non-fiction. I manage about 300 non-academic books a year, plus whatever academic books and journal articles are needed for a) my job and b) whatever I am randomly curious about.

Role-playing games - I adore tabletop, LARP, and CRPGs, though I had to quit MMORPGs because I cannot be trusted to play them in moderation. Unfortunately a lot of other games have ended up in the "work" category, though it does mean I get to play games at the office.

Sailing - I'm a decent sailor and have done some easy bareboating in the Caribbean. My piloting skills aren't great but I'm hoping to improve them with another sailing trip next year.

Singing - I mostly sing opera (yes, my daughter gets arias for lullabies) but I also enjoy blues, folk music, musical theater, and jazz. Oddly, I don't always enjoy listening to what's fun for me to sing!

Listening to music - classical, opera, blues, rock, indie, bubblegum pop, hip-hop, etc. My most recent project is listening to music from a different country every week (not exclusively, but still a good way to explore).

Languages - I'm trying to learn a new language every five years. Sadly I missed the 30-35 block due to dissertation, but I figure I can just get back on that wagon.

Hiking - climb up a thing! climb down a thing! I especially like hikes where I get to see waterfalls.

Judaic study - my husband and I just completed studying the Mishnah (a very large set of Judaic texts) and are starting on the Gemara (an even larger set of Judaic texts).

Game design - yes, this is my job, but I'm currently designing not one but two games for fun. I may never publish them because then they'll become work, but I'm having a damn good time.

Interior design - I absolutely adore making my house a beautiful, functional, organized place. I am a homebody and I want a great home for my body.

Technology - puttering with code is fun, but recently I've gotten interested in building hardware. I'm trying to build a custom case for my Kindle that reads from its internal memory, but so far it's not super compatible with baby.

Child development / parenting - now that I have a kid, it turns out that reading the literature on child development is even more interesting. The grunt work is pretty cool too. (She can now reliably get her hand in her mouth! So cool!)

There are others but this is a pretty decent sampling.

ETA: Wow, I forgot some big ones!

Travel - I LOVE to travel. I like to go slow and really get the sense of a place, but since I'm often tacking on a few days at the end of a work trip that doesn't happen as often as I'd like. On the other hand, tacking on a few days at the end of a work trip means I get to travel a lot more than I would otherwise. (Like going to China all-expenses-paid twice in two years! So awesome.)

Food - I don't love to cook, but I do love to eat, poke around farmers' markets, and even go to the grocery store. My solution was teaching my husband to cook and having him discover he loves it.

Education - educational theory. I love to understand how people learn new things.

Psychology - yeah, okay, this is often work but also often not. I just like to read about how the mind works.

Academia - is screwed up, but the better I understand the system the better I can a) work within it and b) change it.

Knitting - I'm not a good knitter, but I really enjoy it. I don't do complex patterns; I just like the soothing feel of the yarn and the visible progress of the project. I make a lot of scarves, hats, and socks.

Dance - I have no formal training but I LOVE to dance.

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Post by Guest on Thu Mar 05, 2015 1:38 pm

Man, you guys are so much cooler than me! Razz

Film - film and video is one of the biggest things that I love, making movies is stressful but a ton of fun. And I wanna be a part of that, but I gotta write a project soon too. Or I can modify a script I wrote during my internship and produce that. :DD

Art - I'm a real... Uhh, nut, I'm a nut for art. Art history, creating art and critiquing art. I've been arting & shit since I was like 5 or 6 years old, I'm still a crappy artist, but, eh, what can you do other than keep going and practicing art? ;D

Swim - never did I think I'd learn to swim in this lifetime. For about 20 years, since I could remember, I didn't know how to swim. Then I learned how to swim at the collegiate level and I actually got pretty good at it (from what Ive been told). I'm not at an Olympic level, but for a guy who didn't know how to swim three years ago, I'd say this was a win. It also taught me a valuable lesson in hindsight, you can indeed teach an old dog new tricks. :3

Guitar - I've been playing guitar since I sas 14, that was when I got my first and so far only guitar. Hey, guitars are expensive! It was very discouraging when I was first starting out, but I quickly got the hang of it, only took a year of practice. Razz

Gaming - both electronic and tabletop RPG gaming has been a biiiiig part of my life. Amidst all this backlash against gaming culture and whatever, yeah, even I felt like my hobby (and part of my lifestyle) was being attacked when I really just wanna play games too. Which led to me keeping that hobby on the downlow at the risk of being seen like a creepy asshole from the Internet. But I can deal with it, I love my RPGs and Vidya. :3

Classic Cars - I'm not a big car guy like most guys are. I really am not into cars unless they're drift cars, like the Nissa 240X (Silvia K as its known in Japan). But rather I like classic muscle cars, my favorite car is the 1969 Dodge Charger, I blame the Dukes of Hazard. Other classic muscle cars I dig on is the Plymouth Barracuda, the 1970 Ford Mustang Fastback and countless other cars from the 60's and 70's.

Guns - IDK how you all feel about firearms, but guns is something I feel VERY strongly about as I am pro-guns. I don't own any firearms because they are indeed expensive too, but I have fired guns before. Considering this is a touchy subject, that's all I gotta say about this hobby.

LGBT Rights - Pretty self-explanatory, I'm not constantly reading about news in the LGBT community, but I am aware the struggles. Im aware of the horrible murders and suicides of people in the LGBT community. And I try to make people who minimize these people's deaths realize that their murder or suicide is something rooted in hate. And that is not cool. Yes, isn't it strange I'm pro-gun and pro-gay? Razz

I got more stuff I'd love to talk about but I gotta shower. Maybe I'll repost an updated list. Grin


Drinking - Oh man! I can't believe I forgot to add this one, I love to drink. I don't drink as often as I'd like, but that's a good thing, it keeps booze fresh and doesn't wear out the novelty of it. Plus getting drunk is also hilarious and fun too because it's a great way to de-stress every once in awhile. I only really get super drunk once or twice a year, just so we're clear. Getting buzzed is fun, but getting plastered is saved for special occasions, like Halloween and St. Patrick's Day. Oh and Comic-Con. ;D

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Post by Enail on Thu Mar 05, 2015 2:09 pm

This is a bit tricky for me to answer, because there've been some big changes in what I can do and what I can enjoyably do lately, so I'm kind of still figuring this stuff out all over again, but I'll give it a go.

Reading - I've been off it lately for Reasons, but I'd still consider it a hobby/interest/basic thing that of course one does. I like mostly fiction, both genre and literary (I tend to be quite hard to please in modern lit, though), but I have a particular interest in children's and YA fantasy, because it tends to have a craftsmanship-over-High-Art mindset and can have such power and meaning while still being allowed to be fun instead of Serious.  

Comics, illustration, animation - I'm more interested in the medium and creating than a fan of any given group of works out there, but I'll always enjoy reading and discussing all kinds of comics as well, I like a fair bit of anime, and I'll watch almost anything that's attractive and  animated.

Making music - I like singing and playing instruments (though not very well Razz), and even occasionally dabbling in composing. Both a solo activity and a lot of fun with friends.

Food - I don't consider myself a foodie - my tastes aren't particularly refined and I'm not terribly adventurous - but I really enjoy trying new restaurants, eating and making foods from different cultures, going to farmers' markets and discovering vegetables I've never had before, and cooking and baking with friends, either as a comfortable activity or as a big 'let's make this fancy thing' project. I'm particularly into tea, chocolate and Japanese desserts.

Games - mostly RPGs, but I'm also into anything heavy on story, choice and/or that uses the medium in interesting ways. I also like board games, but on a pretty casual level, and have always been fascinated by tabletop RPGs, though I haven't had much chance/made an effort to find more chances to play them yet.

Early-to-medieval Japanese literature - this was my field of study in grad school, and I still find it a really fascinating period.

Overanalyzing and wild theorizing - I love discussing media (either in detail on stuff I enjoy or broad topics), sociology, psychology, history and other broad general interest topics, picking things apart and finding interesting connections. Almost topic can be interesting to me if approached from the right angle, how things influence other things, what makes something tick, how people respond to it.

Languages - I like learning languages, the less relevant to my situation the better, and also learning about languages. I dabble in language creation from time to time, too.

Random creative activities - other than comics, I don't focus much on any one form of creation, but I love thinking up ideas, doing creative projects and learning new skills, anything from solitary writing to planning elaborate theme parties to getting a few friends together for silly creative challenges. I've always kind of wished I had a bit more push to get into cosplay and some friends who do it, because I love costumes (though I can't sew Sad)

Travel/world culture, art and food - my dabbling tendencies come out again here. Rather than being focused in any one topic or any one culture, I love learning about and experiencing different places, landscapes, art forms, both from home and when I'm abroad. Seeing cool buildings, finding out about history, trying new foods, trying to understand different mindsets and perspectives.

And, as is probably pretty clear by now, I'm a dabbler, so I'll enjoy doing quite a lot of activities/discussing a lot of subjects that aren't exactly active interests at least from time to time.

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Post by TheRoux on Thu Mar 05, 2015 3:21 pm

TV & movies: I like those a lot. I watch a lot of movies and series... Sci-Fi, Fantasy, thrillers, Documentaries (on animals mostly... I love the furries and scalies and featheries and slimeys...), B movies

Video Games: I used to play lots of games before... I play less now, I tend to be less interested by the big AAA titles... there was a tendency some years back where everything was about awesome graphics, but everything else was botched (story, gameplay...) I tend to be put off by bad voice acting... (Yes I'm looking at you Elder Scrolls!!!). Now, everything is online... you're alone on your computer and your friends are miles away... While this has advantages, it made me quit the games I loved playing with my friends... like 4X games... I miss the days where we could play Master of Orion 2 on hotseat, playing Magic the Gathering duels while one of use was doing his/her turn... Now we all have to be alone in our rooms to play, and this bores me to the point that I'd rather play alone... and while LANs are still available... only one of us has a car and moving our towers to one's place is a tedious task.

Board Games: So instead of playing video games, me and my friends turned to board games: Diplomacy, Game of Thrones, Twilight Imperium... (but we always lack players)

Tabletop RPGs: D&D, GURPS (it seems nice, but I find it too complicated... would not DM this), Pathfinder (I've been looking for a group for this since forever...), Vampire the Masquarade...

Singing: I've been singing tenor in choirs for 8 years now. (been singing since I was 8 yrs old, then took a break, then went back to it)

Technologies: I'm reading a lot on technologies, new one, updates on old ones. I like new gadgets...

DIY: I love DIY projects... I've been reading on how to make your own whole house music systems and on how people crafted their own computer desks and Gaming Tables... Home automation...

Honorable Mentions:

Sailing: I've had some sailing classes when I was a teenager and I loved it. Got my licenses. Since then I've always wanted to sail again (or even buy a sail boat), but it never happened... Still dreaming...

Scuba diving: Same as sailing, got a junior license but never got to dive again after that...

Lesser mentions:

Game Design: I always wanted to design games... I picked up (read pirated) RPG Maker 2K when it came out but I never really got around taking the time to work on it. Later, I picked up the Unity Engine, played with it a bit, but again... never got to spend much time on it so I ended abandoning my projects, then starting new ones, and then abandoning them again...

Music Making: Well since I wanted to make games, I wanted to learn all the aspects of making games, so I started playing with music creation software... didn't do much...

2D/3D Art: same as above... played with Blender for a time, but never spent enough time to really get good at anything...

About making games: there are a lot of tutorials on how to create games for people who are artists but do not know how to write code... but not for others, like me, who know how to code, but have little artistic skills...

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Post by Werel on Thu Mar 05, 2015 4:27 pm

Damn, y'all are so accomplished! Shiny/thrilled

Reading: everybody loves reading! PhD life has cut way into how much non-academic literature I get to read vs. want to read, but I especially love sci fi, any fiction I can get my hands on (contemporary, 19th century Russian, Tale of Genji, whatevs), and nonfiction about animals and anthropology.

Movies: the weirder the better. I got a pretentious streak a mile wide running through my film tastes. If the reviews mostly feature the words "confusing" and "unsettling," I'm there. Razz

TV: Comedy of various stripes (esp. the Adult Swim/Abso Lutely vein), nature shows, HBO dramas, trashy reality about people behaving poorly.

Tabletop RPGs: Not much time for them these days, but I will always have plenty of love for White Wolf, especially silly old Exalted. Heart Fond of RIFTS and plain D&D, too.

Music: I have zero musical skill, but I sure love listening to it! On an international hip hop kick right now (grime, kuduro, azonto, etc), (post-)punk, new wave, electronic, rock, motown, indie genres with silly names like "shoegaze." Live music makes my world go round, especially in festival format.

Scuba diving: been doing it since I was 12 and love it more than I could possibly say. Sometimes it feels like all the time I spend on land is just a weird interlude between the times I'm in the water where I belong. Loopy

Video games: I currently have no way to play anything except on my laptop/DS, so these days it's mostly Civ 5 and Pokemon. But I love RPGs in the Elder Scrolls and Chrono Cross veins, action RPGs a la Dark Souls, platformers, puzzle games, and shoot 'em ups.

Art: I like it! I like seeing it! I can't say I have any formal training in appreciating it, but my partner and I have amassed a small collection that pleases me very much and makes my life nicer. (When 60% of your moving boxes are art: priorities!)

Making stuff: I like sewing clothes and the occasional costume (for festivals and whatnot), though I am not great at it. Total dabbler in crafts; some screenprinting here, bead embroidery there, a little mask-carving now and then.

Travel: I am gobsmacked at my good fortune to have been able to visit a number of countries, and insanely tickled that I've managed to position myself in a field where I not only get to, but have to, spend plenty of time doing fieldwork abroad. New landscapes/cities/foods/perspectives/cultures/languages light up my life. Being tired and dirty and alone in a foreign city is awesome.

Teaching: I really like teaching creative writing to kids, especially doing sci-fi workshops. Love doing intro seminars to my topic of study for the general public, too! Making stuff I'm passionate about interesting/accessible to other people is gratifying as heck, and I think I'm not bad at it. Teaching undergrad courses isn't bad either, but the enthusiasm level is a little lower in most of those rooms. Razz

Animal cognition and ethology: anything and everything about how non-humans think and experience the world. Memory, self-recognition, communication systems, interspecies interactions, behavior, emotion. Personally very meaningful and also just plain fascinating!

Edit: can't believe I forgot
bomaye wrote:Figuring Out Why People Do What They Do
My favorite hobby in the whole world.

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Post by bomaye on Thu Mar 05, 2015 5:16 pm

Wikipedia: How did we ever live without it? I haven't edited an article though

Video Games: I go between wanting to be deeply immersed in the video games and their culture, to just wanting to play them casually

Anime/Manga: Japanese nerd culture holds a special place in my heart. I mostly skew towards mecha and shonen though, but there's others I've hit up before. I've got quite a list that I'm going to look into, most of it is older stuff or genre-defining stuff of yesteryear

Geopolitics: The latest interest, I'll see if it burns out after a few months or not. Mostly been reading George Friedman on Stratfor and Mercatornet. Shit is super interesting (things like how Germany's geography really leaves it three choices when it comes to self defense, either integrate themselves into the economies of surrounding powers by making more than they need and exporting, hope those surrounding powers aren't on good terms and keep them there, or attack first aka World War I and II)

Television/Cartoons: Not really, it's just those really good or special shows every once in awhile. Superhero cartoons or shonen-style cartoons are something that kind of gets left out in the dust that I wish I had time for

Pro Wrestling: Even when I leave it for a few years, I come back and go even further down the rabbit hole than last time. There is so much going on under the hood when it comes to pro wrestling that I think it shocks a lot of people when they find out.

Comics: Same as video games, I drop in an out, but when I drop in binge hard. The other night I read so much that I had a dream that I was involved in a running gun battle with secret agents in a combination college dorm/military facility and then woke up the next day with a reader's headache Grin

Canucks/Whitecaps: Go local sports teams in major leagues!

Sports business, tabletop RPGs: These are two of my lapsed ones. Maybe they'll make a comeback some day

Figuring Out Why People Do What They Do: New studies or anecdote that goes with or goes against the grain can usually draw me in, especially when it comes to relationship shit

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Post by readertorider on Thu Mar 05, 2015 5:37 pm

Huh, this is interesting!

Reading-Usually the bulk of my consumption is sci-fi/fantasy (Neil Gaiman, Connie Willis, Guy Gabriel Kay, T.H. White, China Mieville, Robin McKinley, Neal Stephenson...Lovestruck) but I also love Agatha Christie and Jane Austen and will usually read a few non-fiction books a year (codebreaking/making! early navigation! 19th century science!) as well as other genres.

Origami-The super-complex stuff (google Satoshi Kamiya) is beautiful and you feel so accomplished after folding, and the simple designs make wonderful boxes for gifts and are useful for amusing young cousins. The math aspects are fascinating, the crease patterns challenging, and I will get better at designing things... eventually Smile I also have something of a passion for paper.

Board games-Anything with strategy and I am interested--from monopoly and chess to Axis and Allies and Arkham Horror.

Video games-My computer is old, but I really like single player RPGs like Skyrim or puzzle based games like puzzle quest. Also Pokemon--if I ever buy a 3DS it will likely only be for Pokemon games.

Kayaking-I love being out on the water, sneaking up on herons, that thrill you get when a snapping turtle swims under your boat. Two person kayaking and kayaking with rapids and sea kayaking and kayaking with people who only want you to tow them along are also fun Wink

Knitting-I like to make things and play with colors and have something to do while watching TV. The patterns are also really cool and I like the challenge of figuring out how something works while creating something I (or often my sister) can actually use.

Baseball-I like going to games, I like statistical nature of the game, I like watching the marvelous plays, I like knowing people's names and being able to talk about the sport with random strangers in my city (or in places very very far away from my city).

I'm also a dabbler in a whole bunch of things--I enjoy baking/archery/hiking/horseback riding/playing piano/rock climbing but my interest/dedication/opportunity fluctuates. Two of my goals are to learn a new language and learn how to make bread.

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Post by eselle28 on Thu Mar 05, 2015 5:54 pm

Reading: I read two or three books a month, and in a pinch, almost any genre will do. Most of what I read is science fiction or fantasy, whether labeled as such or not, but I also enjoy romance, literary fiction, short story collections, YA, and non-fiction books touching on social history, political history, and astronomy/physics.

Movies and TV: I'm bimodal when it comes to movies. I like big loud action movies and little disturbing indie movies, and am pretty iffy on a lot in between. On TV, I lean pretty heavily toward dark dramas and fantasy/sci fi. I'm also a big fan of nature and science documentaries. On Netflix, I've been watching quite a lot of anime recently, mostly because I have a backlog of recommendations my friends have given me over the years.

Video Gaming: MMOs, RPGs, adventure games, and the occasional strategy game. If there's a throwback game being funded on Kickstarter, there's a decent chance I'm one of the donors.

Football: I'm a Jets fan. Sigh. I also play fantasy football - I've won my league twice in the last three years.

Travel: I try to travel internationally every other year, but this year it wasn't going to happen. I'm trying to scratch the travel itch by taking several smaller trips instead!

Politics: Global, national, state, local. I'm that person who actually cares about mayoral races and ballot measures.

Astronomy: This may be odd to list, since I don't have any training in it. Still, I love to read about it, even though the math and the physics are a bit hard for me. I have a telescope that I don't use quite as often as I should.

Genealogy: Not in the way where someone's trying to prove how awesome their ancestors were. Mine are all very obscure. I picked up the skill set at work, and applying it to my own family was just too tempting. I'm particularly interested in finding out as much as I can about the women in the family, since there's generally little information on them, and about the general patterns of people's lives during various periods.

Crafting: I didn't think I liked to craft until about a year ago. In fact, I used to gripe about how annoying it was that so many people I knew were so passionate about it. Turns out I had some biases from being prompted to do crafts I didn't like when I was a child. When I'm making something I think is cool or suspect a friend will like, I really enjoy it. Cross stitch is my favorite, but I'm also crocheting a blanket. Crochet has been pretty difficult for me to pick up, but I also sort of enjoy the challenge of learning something very new.

Animal Rescue: I've fostered dogs, cats, and rabbits, both by taking in strays and through formal arrangements with rescue groups. The only critter at my place at the moment is mine for life, but I will probably have another temporary guest at some point this year.
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Post by Wondering on Thu Mar 05, 2015 6:21 pm

Neat! Now, a lot of these things I don't have time for anymore because of my 7 month old, but I hope to get back to them in the not too distant future.

Cooking: I love to eat yummy food, so I love to cook to supply my eating desires. I'm not someone who can really do things without recipes, but I will try almost any recipe difficulty level if I'm interested in eating it. That Julie and Julia movie? I'd do something like that. And my husband does the dishes.

Travel and travel planning: I have been to all 50 state capitols and 9/10 Canadian provincial ones (plus Whitehorse). I love taking road trips, and I love planning them. I plan them recreationally almost. I love to sit down at a road map and think about where to go and how to drive there. When people, like in this forum, say where they live or have been to, I mentally start thinking how I'd drive there from here. Road trip planning is possibly my best skill.

Reading: Romance novels, fantasy, cookbooks, feminist theology, historical and cultural descriptions. I like to read a lot more than I have time for, though.

History: Back when I was an academic, I was a medievalist. I can tell you a lot about medieval England in particular. And Beowulf.

Languages: I have studied German, Latin, and Anglo-Saxon (see above re: medievalist). I love to learn about languages. I can tell you lots of details about the history of English and its orthography. I work in a language related job, though it doesn't require me to know anything other than English.

Tolkien: See above re languages, medievalist, fantasy novels. Tolkien does get his own category on my list. Oh, yes, he does. Wink

Games: I like board games. We have so many board games. I'm looking forward to being able to play them with my daughter when she's older. Video games I like, but I don't really have time for.

TV: Cooking shows, competitive cooking shows, Star Trek, Buffy, Once Upon a Time, Shield, Agent Carter, New Girl, Parks and Rec, Nashville, Babylon 5.

The Olympics: So, I live far enough north to get CBC. Which shows the Olympics live, unlike NBC. I work from home. I watch the Olympics live no matter where in the world it is or what time it is. And then I watch the NBC broadcast later for the focus on American athletes.

National Parks: Did you know Ken Burns did a documentary on the national parks? Did you know there are 59 national parks and the newest is Pinnacles in California? Did you know there's a national park in American Samoa and the only way to get to Samoa from the US is a twice weekly flight out of Honolulu? Did you know that Key West is not the farthest west of the Florida Keys, that there's a national park at the end of them you can only get to by boat or plane? I plan to see all the national parks. (See above re: trip planning.)

Music: I like soundtracks. I also have a skill to be able to recall, almost with perfect accuracy, a song I heard years ago. I'm not a singer, but I sing to myself and my baby constantly. Lots of songs. So many songs.

Parenting (while feminist): I'm a mom now. It's a whole new undertaking. Scary, wonderful, and many times frustrating. See me rant about anti-vaxxers! I don't really like saying I stay home with the baby since I work from home anyway. But I am the daytime caregiver. While I work part time. It will be interesting to see how that all works out as she gets older.

-Nevertheless, she persisted


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Post by Guest on Thu Mar 05, 2015 11:36 pm

Art: Probably no secret or surprise, but I'm big into illustrative art. Smile Lately I've been finding myself leaning toward very colorful, graphic, or comicky stuff like Becky Cloonan, Goni Montes or Loish, but my first love is realistic fantasy stuff (the first artist I really twigged onto was Michael Whelan). I'm still pretty new to it, so it's been pretty exciting to start scratching the surface and realize how many fantastic artists are out there!

Reading: This is basically all I did as a kid. These days, I don't do it so much (I find I spend my downtime reading on forums instead, if I'm not arting), but I tended to drift toward fantasy, science fiction, YA, and historical, sociological or psychological nonfiction.

Architecture: I am terrible at the architectural history part of it. I could tell you an Arts and Crafts style from a Brutalist from a Gothic style, but that's about it, and certainly no more than "sometime in the last couple of centuries/long before the last couple of centuries." :p I love looking at buildings and touring them, though! By far my favorite thing that I remember the most about AC2 and its sequels were the buildings and how cool it was to be parkouring around various Italian landmarks I'd studied. I'm still mad at myself that I lived in Pittsburgh for four years and never went to Fallingwater, because I wasn't into Frank Lloyd Wright's work at the time. Barcelona is the next city I want to visit because of Gaudi.

Speaking of traveling: yeah, that. Love traveling around (especially traveling cheaply), meeting people, seeing sights, eating food, exploring museums and buildings, learning history, filling my eyes and ears and experiences bank. I find the experience of traveling itself pretty zen (though I plan a lot and try to make sure I get in early to accomplish that). I don't do it enough, I don't think. I'm a bit of an overplanner when it comes to it, though - I once made an Excel worksheet to compare and contrast various hostels. :p

Relatedly: anthropology/culture/sociology/gender theory/psychology/religion/People! It's kind of a mish-mash, because I've never delved too deeply into any one and I'm totally a butterfly dabbler (I majored in anthropology in undergrad, but it was somewhat unfocused and I've forgotten most of it), but I love reading about what makes people people.

Dancing/music: I love music on its own (goodness knows there's plenty of music I like that isn't suited to dancing) but my god I love music that I can move to. I love going to shows, I like going to house parties, I'm less enthused about clubs mostly because you never know if it'll be a great time or kind of a dud, but feeling the beat thrumming through your lungs and finding the perfect rhythm to sway or step or thrash to is the closest I'll probably ever get to a religious experience.  ... despite that, I am pretty bad at organized dancing with actual steps. I don't have a very good kinesthetic memory. :p I keep thinking about maybe taking hiphop or breakdancing lessons sometime, though. And I sing along to music all the time, frequently work out simple harmonic lines to accompany it, and enjoy karaoke (with friends in a private room).

Gaming: Funny that it's kind of low on this list so far, but yes - primarily story-based stuff, like tabletop, freeform online roleplaying (at least one major circle of friends was made from MUSHes I inhabited in my teenage/college years), RPGs, and the like. I also have a fondness for grand strategy games (Crusader Kings 2!) and the Sims, and little indie things like interactive fiction, visual novels, dating sims, and the like. I'm working on a game with some friends and spinning ideas for possible solo or duo projects that I could work on, too.

Writing: I haven't done it in a while, save for a solo Pendragon campaign that I was playing/writing for a while, but I wanted to be an author when I was a kid. It's since transferred over to art. The goal one day is to write a novel and be able to do the cover/illustrations for it, but it's hard enough to master one discipline. :p

Cats: ... I might have a slight addiction to cute cat pictures.

Cocktails/mixology/whiskey: I have a tongue that is deeply sensitive to the taste of alcohol, and my taste trends super-sweet, but I find I really enjoy the thought that goes into good cocktails and the history behind them! And a good Old-Fashioned starts off my evening just right.

I also like these things to a lesser extent, but I haven't done it so much/I haven't done it enough in a while to actually name it as a full-fledged hobby: clothing (fashion, somewhat as an extension of character design, somewhat for myself), martial arts (I did kung fu and Krav Maga for several years), motorcycles (I rode for a couple of years, but realized I was too lazy and not into it enough to do it consistently, and not at all into the mechanic work and upkeep), horseback riding (did it all through high school), baking (haven't done it in a while, but made bread, pies, cookies, attempted to make a layer cake once).

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Post by Werel on Thu Mar 05, 2015 11:46 pm

Autumnflame wrote:I love going to shows, I like going to house parties, I'm less enthused about clubs mostly because you never know if it'll be a great time or kind of a dud, but feeling the beat thrumming through your lungs and finding the perfect rhythm to sway or step or thrash to is the closest I'll probably ever get to a religious experience.  ... despite that, I am pretty bad at organized dancing with actual steps.

Yes yes yes, all of this! Shiny/thrilled "Religious experience" is the way I always describe it too. And I am also terrible at choreographed dancing. Fistbump.

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Post by Archetype694 on Fri Mar 06, 2015 12:12 am

Werel wrote:Damn, y'all are so accomplished! Shiny/thrilled

I know right?!? It's kinda cool in a way seeing how gifted and talented the various members of this forum are. Sure makes a heaping helping of humble pie. Laughing

Reading: Most of my reading these days comes from the paper or blogs. Such as NY times, BBC, Ars Technica, as well as the occasional The Economist article.

Book wise I will pretty much whatever is in front of me, though I favor Science fiction, Fantasy, and various forms of history. I say various forms as it has only recently dawned on me how much economics and history are intertwined after working my way through the class lectures of Adam Smith and excerpts of the "Wealth of Nations".  

I've also read, but not quite understood "The elegant universe" and parts of "The arrow of time" I plan to go back and re read these books as my layman understanding has improved over the years and perhaps I will understand the content better then I did before.

Cooking: I'm not a good cook, but I can make a few dishes well. I can't say that I enjoy cooking but I do like how in one way the skill is an equalizer between the classes, as in even a person of humble means can still eat well by knowing how to cook.

History: One of my favorite subjects. It strikes me how little man has changed throughout our written history. I find it amazing the solutions that the great minds past came upon in building civilizations, how with meager tools and a strong foundation of mathematics wonders were built that stand tall thousands of years later.

Games: While I mainly play video games I enjoy board games and Larp. Sadly though where I live there are few that share any interest in either so I find myself mainly playing on my pc. I enjoy RPG's, Strategy, Space Sims and Shooters. I prefer team based and objective based gameplay over mindless deathmatch.

Music: I have no musical talent but I do appreciate a wide variety of genres. I love classical, swing / big band, Rock, techno, trance, hip hop and even some country.

Biology: I adore anything and everything that has to do with life and it's various forms that it can take. (Like tardigrade's for example) How persistent it is, over the course of the cosmic calendar and even with the various extinction events that have occurred in earths history how it still finds a way to persist and eventually thrive in it's environment.

Cosmology: Another subject that while I have little practical knowledge of still fascinates the five year old inside me. That with just math and the tools of the era great minds were able to piece together such knowledge as the orbits of the planets, that light has a speed limit and that gravity can stretch and alter our perception of time.

I find it all amazing, how our senses and common sense, which serve us well in day to day practical matters are completely useless and can even hold us back when we try to understand and measure the universe around us and the laws that it must seemingly obey.

Animals: For the most part I have never met an animal I did not like. Even supposedly "mean animals" tend to take a liking to me given enough time and treats  Smile

Technology: It's the nerd in me, I enjoy tinkering with objects, seeing how they work and then trying to put them back together. Sometimes I even wind up not having leftover parts! Anything computer wise I find interesting and if you combine that with the latest medical advances you have my full attention.

Taijiquan: It's been a hell of an experience so far. I was rather dubious at first if I would ever be able to preform some of the moves that you see in the various forms. With daily practice I have advanced somewhat.  I'd be lying if I said I was good at it, but I certainly am improving as time goes on. Not many husky guys can run through the whole Yang 24 form cheers

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Post by Guest on Fri Mar 06, 2015 2:34 am

Werel wrote:
Autumnflame wrote:I love going to shows, I like going to house parties, I'm less enthused about clubs mostly because you never know if it'll be a great time or kind of a dud, but feeling the beat thrumming through your lungs and finding the perfect rhythm to sway or step or thrash to is the closest I'll probably ever get to a religious experience.  ... despite that, I am pretty bad at organized dancing with actual steps.

Yes yes yes, all of this! Shiny/thrilled "Religious experience" is the way I always describe it too. And I am also terrible at choreographed dancing. Fistbump.

Fistbump for the rhythmically-inclined-yet-challenged! Wink I meant to mention, but it slipped my mind, that Exalted was the first tabletop game I ever actually played! Grin I have a soft spot for it still and did a bit of work for it a few times. Looking forward to 3rd ed. and might run a short stint when it comes out, if I have the time/can muster the interest in local folks.


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Post by nearly_takuan on Fri Mar 06, 2015 4:09 am

Cool idea for a thread; great way for us to glimpse some of the more shareable details of other members' private lives.

There isn't much I do these days outside of work, because I'm still re-learning how to make time for things outside of work. (The last several weekends since I started have been devoted entirely to getting my license and other related affairs in order.) But I've had my share of hobbies and interests, some of which I'm eager to get back to when I'm more financially and mentally stable....

Running: I was a distance runner in high school, on the technicality that I ran long distances without resting or walking. Didn't love it, but it was a way of making friends and killing time after school (school was out at 2, but parents never left school before 5, and even in high school I wasn't allowed to walk/run/bike myself home because I couldn't have my own key...). So it was only somewhat recently that I realized I actually kind of like running and can be somewhat good at it provided it's short-distance sprints and not long jogs. If I find myself with a preponderance of free time (three months ago I had that, but no money) at some point, I would love to try freerunning or similar.

Biking: Many of you know this about me already. Big fan of biking. If it's less than twenty miles away and there are safe bike paths, I'm gonna bike to get there.

Reading: One of many things that has fallen by the wayside over the last few years; I used to be the kind of kid who frustrated all the teachers and forced them to confiscate books during their lectures. Fantasy and science fiction novels are still generally my favorites, too; I don't branch out much beyond that, especially lately.

Cooking: I continue to be suspicious of ingredients that seem "too" synthetic and don't like paying lots and waiting lots for my meals. I started cooking a lot more once I realized my refusal to eat fast food meant that not cooking involved a minimum ten-minute round-trip commute (by bike or on foot) between my apartment and the restaurant of my choice, and then a possible wait for seating, and then a wait for servers, and then a wait for the meal, and then a wait for the check, and then paying a lot of money plus a tip. That doesn't save time! (Unless it is one of the sushi track shops I favor.) I've gotten pretty good at putting together almost-nutritious meals with short prep times (partly because I also work fast and get faster with practice), and in particular I celebrate my heritage by making sushi and musubis, which are also pretty big hits at parties.

Music: I'm a passable violinist if you put me on backup, and I guess when I really have to I can generally rebuild a song via piano or MIDI mixer, but otherwise my participation in music is strictly observational. Paul Simon continues to be my favorite, and I struggle to name musicians that started after 1995.

Media: I have trouble separating comics and movies and TV and video games within my own range of interests, even though I am well aware each medium has its own strengths and weaknesses, and in fact that is part of what intrigues me about each format. I frequently enjoy playing amateur critic, especially with friends. Guess that only makes sense: everyone's a critic, after all, and there are still many cases where I still am a subset of everyone. Wink

Programming: As of yesterday I've dabbled in pretty much everything that I know of. My best affinities are in low-level logic and CLI-like applications, but I've done a bit of high-level project design, Web app UI, framework development, game modding, ....

I like academic theory stuff in general, too; I sometimes have difficulty staying focused enough to read a really dense book cover-to-cover, but I enjoy searching through documents and reports for specific information. History can be fascinating. And since I have some fairly strong political alignments and ethical beliefs, I find myself debating and writing about these sorts of things often enough that I also get to cite a lot of the information I discover.

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Post by caliseivy on Fri Mar 06, 2015 6:43 pm

Eh alright I'll take a stab at it.
TV: not much lately. Some time ago I lost interest in most shows, and the backlog of recommendations by my siblings is scary. Currently a fan of The Walking Dead and The Strain whenever it comes back on

Video Games: my main hobby is video games, though I'm not much of a collector of games as I can't bring myself to buy multiple consoles. I'm okay with most types of games except FPS because I suck at it and it frustrates me, and Fighting games because I've just never taken to them much. Big fan of the Silent Hill series, Etrian Odyssey series, and Fire Emblem now that I know it exists. I might also qualify as a Legend of Zelda fanatic.

Music: mostly Rock (and mostly 90's stuff apparently), on occasion some metal. Actually I suck at recognizing genres. Florence + Machine is life and Adele is magic.

I have a tolerate-hate relationship with writing. I haven't written a story or tried to complete any novel-length anything in maybe two years. Since a family member is asking about the sequel one she read forever ago, I've been debating whether I have it in my heart to end another break and go back to writing.

I enjoy learning random facts about random animals. It's hard not to fall into the animal section of the National Geographic website, especially the videos.

I guess I'm collecting Lego figurines. And notebooks. I haven't been writing and yet I keep buying notebooks.

Reading: I am having a hard time getting back into reading for leisure, but still a big fan of Jim Butcher's stuff. Fantasy and Urban Fantasy are my interests. If it's not Urban Fantasy then it has to be far from reality before I'll read it.

I want to learn to code. My limited experience with it has been interesting but I can't articulate why.

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Post by V on Thu Mar 19, 2015 11:41 am

A bit late to the party; this a fascinating thread!

Like most people I love reading.  Japanese literature, thrillers, mysteries, history, self help, politics, economics, popular science and historical counterfactuals amongst others

I'm a big of American cop shows but my favorites shows
probably are Canadian - Flashpoint and British - Spooks.

Learning languages is another passion and I am going to start a thread on that.

As Homer Simpson said "rock achieved perfection in 1973" and I'm really into the sixties and early seventies when it comes to music.

Travel of course; I love wandering around cities, particularly lane ways.

In the oddball corner are national constitutions ( I have an app with the Italian constitution in the Italian language as you do - I did say oddball), Australian constitutional reform, public transport policy and urban design  amongst others.  And I love maps, maps, maps.


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Post by Wondering on Thu Mar 19, 2015 4:55 pm

Yay for map-loving! Grin

-Nevertheless, she persisted


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Post by Guest on Thu Mar 19, 2015 11:33 pm

May as well give this a whirl.

Music: Music, music, music. It's my main passion these days to listen to music. I delve into as many genres as I can, but my mainstay is 70s era rock - mainly progressive. Recently I've started listening to more modern experimental groups such as Ulver, Manes and Flying Lotus to stretch out a little bit. A very specific musical passion I have, however, is Celtic music thanks to my family heritage. From more contemporary acts like The Waterboys to 'musicians' bands like The Gloaming, if it's Celtic I want to know about it. My Dad has a Celtic rock band that's pretty big in Australia's folk scene so that's where I got it all. The band is older than me. Laughing

Computers: My whole job and, hopefully, eventual career revolves around them. Currently working in a data centre, so lots of cool gadgets all around me at once that, for the most part, no one is allowed to touch, hah. Data centres in general are a main interest to me now, but my real passion lies in computer forensics and general IT Security. At one point I was gung-ho about joining the police in a computer forensic capacity, but along came this job I have and, ta-da, maybe I need to rethink things a little.

Anime / Manga: Although I lean heavily to the manga side of things. Like a lot guys my age, I was right into DBZ when it first aired but I didn't actually know it was anime or Japanese originally - just thought it was a cartoon of some description. In high school, a friend gave me some fansubbed Bleach episodes in Japanese class and the rest was history. I float around the genres to keep things interesting.

Languages: I love me some languages! If only I was fluent in more than one. Razz I took Japanese for six years in high school and reached a point where I could comfortably go to Japan and get by rather well. I need a lot of work still, especially when it comes to casual forms of speech and practicing my Kanji but I'll get there. I have a lot of original Japanese manga that I can read no worries, but it's all Shonen so it's furigana notated. Once I reach the point where I don't need that, I'll be on cloud nine. As for other languages, I'm looking into learning Scots Gaelic, but it's not easy finding somewhere practical to learn it in Melbourne and online resources aren't tops.

Comics: I recently when berserk getting into comics because before last year, I had only read The Killing Joke. So, I've looked at DC and Marvel, but also other publishers (the current Red Sonja series is actually pretty fucking cool?). I hopped around to a bunch of things, including a lot of series I figured would be blergh but turned out quite the opposite. I haven't read any in months, but I was letting my digital subscriptions pile up a little so I have a reading backlog.

Fashion: I really loves clothes. They are the most in your face way of standing out or becoming one with the masses, depending on how you use them. My sister is a fashion designer, so I've been exposed to the process of clothes making and design for years and it's hard not to appreciate the effort that goes into even the simplest looking pieces when you see how it's made. I wouldn't say I keep on top of the trends or anything, but I do like to give myself a style or look because it's fun to play around with.

Reading and Writing: Reading is pretty simple. I like books so I read them. But I also like to write, even if I'm not all that good at it. I've been struggling with some writers block on a sequel to a fanfiction I finished recently - I'm straying away from direct source material and into a personally created scenario that needs some more work. The original fanfiction was just an idea I felt I needed to get out of my head and it turned into an unfortunate epic I never really planned on. But it was so fun to make characters, pit them against each other, work out who would live and who would die and create an overarching story that would lead into a sequel I didn't even realise I had set up. I write by the seat of my pants to keep things interesting, which means the general quality isn't there but I have a lot of fun.

Whisky: I love me some single-malt whisky. The local bar I go to stocks what specific ones I ask for, which is hilariously awesome. I'm a particular fan of Islay whiskies, which are peaty and smokey. But, there's a certain charm to the absolute smoothness of Speyside whiskies. I've also sampled two Whiskies from Australia which were decent and a low level Suntory from Japan which... wasn't so decent. I've been trying to explore more and more varieties because it's just amazing how different one whiskey can be from another.

Videogames: Not much to say here but I'm usually listening to music and playing games at the same time. I specifically love 2D fighting games, so, The King of Fighters, Guilty Gear, BlazBlue etc. I love games about characters or games that feature an array of differing characters to choose from. I think it stems from having this weird love of character design in anything. Fighting games are great vehicles for cool charcater design because that's a large draw factor of them - you'll rarely find even competitive players play a fighting game where they hate the aesthetic design but love the system.

...Well, that last one turned into something other than games but, hey, I'm passionate about it I guess? Razz


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Post by V on Fri Mar 20, 2015 2:08 pm

Yes Wondering, maps are awesome!


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