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Your OTHER Interests? 
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PITA Bred
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Joined: Wed Apr 09, 2008 12:17 pm
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Post Your OTHER Interests?
All right, I guess we all know that each of us is here primarily because of an interest in that writer fellow. I found the photography discussion interesting because it was so unrelated.

So: what are your interests besides RAH, sf, etc.?

My major (other) interests are:

  • Max Headroom. I have worked for several years (with interruptions) on a complete documentary and archival project for Max. The incomplete results can be found at www.MaxHeadroom.com.
  • Sir Richard Francis Burton. Long-stalled project related to RFB in much the same way I have worked with Heinlein and Max. A web site is forthcoming shortly and, with the last of my active interest in Heinlein wrapped up and the Max project having a defined completion span, I expect to spend a very long time on the RFB project - decades, perhaps most of my remaining decades. UPDATE: The web site has gone live www.SirRichardFrancisBurton.org
  • Cobras. The four-wheeled kind, not the two-fanged kind. I keep idly shopping for a Shelby 4000 series, ERA or Kirkham but haven't found the right beast yet.
  • SF Giants. The post-Bonds era will be interesting. Not that the current season shows much promise.
  • City of Heroes. As a wild and crazy gamer, I tend to play one game for so long that even the original creators are surprised. I've been in CoH for four years now and still find it endlessly diverting.

This is all besides things like kids, family, cooking, travel, pets (Great Danes - too many of them) and other usuals. Your turn...

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"Hier stehe ich. Ich kann nicht anders." - Luther
In the end, I found Heinlein is finite. Thus, finite analysis is needed.


Mon Apr 21, 2008 4:49 pm
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Post Re: Your OTHER Interests?
well seeing that i just arrived home from umpiring a high school baseball game, i believe that would have to be one of my interests- been an addict of the game for pushing 45 years

have a passion for reading that is never satiated- from james fenimore cooper to RAH to tom clancy to .......... yeeegads- so many books so little time.

i also have a pretty large collection of classic/geezer rock and roll- several thousand songs in this genre- i'm constantly adding to this and play the library while i browse this forum and during gameplay

sorry Jim just plain old civil war general where i try to to the historical loser and make them into winners of the specific battle- lol once in a while i trounce history- most of the time the game is so "historically" weighted the odds are impossible- one of these days I'll lead pickett's charge and overrun dem damn yankees at gettysburg !!

otherwise it's time spent trying tyo cope with 4 teens and a 22 year old- never a dull moment !


Mon Apr 21, 2008 5:14 pm
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Post Re: Your OTHER Interests?
My other interests include, in no particular order:

Finance & Legal. Hey, it pays the bills.

Writing. Fiction and non-fiction, although so far only non-fiction magazine and newpaper articles have been published. Currently working on a science-fiction piece.

Space Travel. I've been a follower of government-sponsored and private space enterprises since I was a small child, which is why I've worked for NASA contractors for the past 20 years.

The Beatles. A huge fan since catching them on Ed Sullivan when I was 7 years old (encouraged by my mother, no less). I try to see Paul McCartney or Ringo Starr in concert with my wife (also a fan) whenever I get the rare opportunity, and I have a largish collection of albums (vinyl).

Music. Music in general. I especially love going to jazz clubs in New York while they're still around. They're a dying breed. Actually attended college on a music scholarship but majored in Accounting. Go figure. Was avid musician in youth.

Sports. I'm a typical male sports fan. Spectator only. I played basketball in high school, but like a lot of folks I'm more of a pro football fan these days, especially the Redskins. I'm a season ticket holder. I still like baseball and basketball, though, and it's been great to have a local big league team in Washington again.

Edit: Jim, I just checked out your Max Headroom site. All I can say is...wow. I'm glad there are tenacious folks like you around.

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"Being right too soon is socially unacceptable." - Heinlein, Expanded Universe


Last edited by JackKelly on Tue Apr 22, 2008 6:33 am, edited 1 time in total.



Mon Apr 21, 2008 5:23 pm
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Heinlein Nexus
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Post Re: Your OTHER Interests?
Global economics. To paraphrase a wise man, it's essential to one's survival these days.

Landscaping, specifically, clearing the brush off several acres of property.

Writing. I have a couple of computer books published. I'd like to add fiction to that.


Mon Apr 21, 2008 7:13 pm
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Post Re: Your OTHER Interests?
Dancing. I've been off from competition for 2 years now due to injury but intend to return to it soon.

Wine.

Fencing...Sometimes I see people saying that Glory Road inspired people to take up fencing, in my case it was Zelazny's Amber Chronicles when I was 11. I fenced until I was 15, stopped due to finances and lack of an instructor in my area (the only one retired). Restarted later on. Now, due to time commitments required to be successful in dance its not really possible to follow the two disciplines effectively when also working full time. Further, I have a knee with issues and the lunges required in fencing are actually more brutal on the knee than dancing. I fenced foil. Wanted to go to Saber but never got there. Sigh...

Photography obviously...based on the other thread.

Hiking...its like meditation for me.

Boating. I have both sailed and power-boated. There tends to be a division among the water crowd between the sailors and the powerboaters. Personally, the priority for me is to be out on the water. Love both the ocean and lakes - particularly Lake George in New York.

Travel. England, Germany, France, Russia, Canada. Want to get some domestic travel done this year. I have been up and down the east coast quite a bit...but have never been to a number of significant places in the USA...like the Grand Canyon.


Wed Apr 23, 2008 3:18 am
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Post Re: Your OTHER Interests?
Peter Scott wrote:
Global economics. To paraphrase a wise man, it's essential to one's survival these days.



Only remotely related but by any chance did you read Freakonomics? If so, what did you think?


Wed Apr 23, 2008 3:51 pm
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Post Re: Your OTHER Interests?
JohnBlack wrote:
Only remotely related but by any chance did you read Freakonomics? If so, what did you think?


I haven't; so I just placed a hold on it at the library. From the Amazon reviews it appears to be concerned with social issues more than finance, which is where my interests lie. I read Agora Financial's newsletters, John Mauldin, and Richard Russell. Freakin' scary stuff, people. They called the current crisis way in advance of the mainstream media (no big stretch there mind you), so thanks to them I got a few ounces of gold a few years ago that's performed better than my other investments. The world right now is facing an economic crisis on a scale that's probably larger than the Great Depression. If that sounds like wacky conspiracy theory overkill, it's time to wake up and smell the coffee, because the most optimistic of the people I read is still damned pessimistic.

Global water shortages (mostly distribution problems) combined with droughts. A credit crisis that's nowhere near peak. China sewing up oil imports. Peak oil. Global food shortages triggered by droughts, diversion to ethanol, and distribution problems. Rice, corn, wheat doubled in the last year; the riots have started in some countries and I reckon the trouble will hit the USA faster and harder than anyone would have guessed. Heinlein's prediction that "We'll all be getting a little hungrier" may come to pass. Let's not forget the $53 trillion unfunded obligation of the US government. And there's no slack left in the financial system and no new bubbles to blow to stave off crisis. Unless someone invents some serious nanotechnology or alternative energy source real soon, there is trouble brewing. There are so many cards stacked against us (so many things I didn't mention; didja know that China has 95% of the world's market on rare earths? They undercut the competition years ago. Big deal, you say? Look up the role of lanthanum in oil refining) that even if 90% of them turn out to be red herrings the rest can still mess us up big time.


Wed Apr 23, 2008 7:50 pm
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Post Re: Your OTHER Interests?
Peter Scott wrote:
JohnBlack wrote:
Only remotely related but by any chance did you read Freakonomics? If so, what did you think?


I haven't; so I just placed a hold on it at the library. From the Amazon reviews it appears to be concerned with social issues more than finance, which is where my interests lie. I read Agora Financial's newsletters, John Mauldin, and Richard Russell. Freakin' scary stuff, people.



Absolutely on the mark - its more about social issues...which is why I said it was only remotely related. If you're looking for deep econ math then you will be disappointed.

I am not familiar with Mauldin and Russell - are they book authors or newsletter writers? I wasn't certain if you were linking them to Agora's or not. If they are book authors what do you recommend as a first read from them (assuming that they've published more than once).

I believe China will be the next super-power. What do you think? Their economy is expanding and we owe them a LOT of money.


Wed Apr 23, 2008 8:27 pm
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Post Re: Your OTHER Interests?
Scuba diving. I try to go on one big scuba trip a year. So far I've been to the Flower Gardens, Key Largo, the east coast of Florida, Monterey Bay, Cozumel, Belize, Roatan, Grand Cayman, USVI, Dominican Republic, Sea of Cortez, Truk Lagoon, Solomon Islands, Kona, Bora Bora, Moorea, Papua New Guinea, and the Red Sea. I've been certified since 1973 and now have Advanced Open Water, Nitrox, and Underwater Naturalist certifications. Tops on my wish list for future destinations is Palau, but my dive club is going to Raja Ampat, Indonesia next, so I go where they go.

Flying. I hold a Commercial, Airplane Single and Multi-Engine Land, Single Engine Sea license with Instrument rating. However, a 1989 diagnosis of Type II Diabetes cost me my medical certificate. I'm getting the diabetes under control and hope to get my medical back before too long.

Air & Space museums.

Fencing. I was on the team and competed in 3 weapons while I was an undergraduate at Rice University. I was never very good at it.

Skydiving. I was on the competition team at Rice. I gave it up to do the pilot's license as soon as I had the money.

Falconry. I kept a tiercel Kestrel when I was in junior high, but have never lived in a place that was conducive to keeping birds again. But I love any chance to be around them, and thoroughly enjoy monitoring the progress of the nesting pair of Peregrine falcons on the roof of San Jose, CA, city hall every year. There's a Webcam!

Pogo, the comic strip from last century by Walt Kelly. I believe I own at least one copy of every Pogo strip ever published.

Model rocketry. I founded the model rocket club at my high school. I've done it only sporadically since then.

Travel. In addition to the scuba destinations, I've also been to Canada, Mexico, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Holland, Belgium, Germany, Austria, England, Scotland, France, Italy, Greece, Yugoslavia (when it existed), Turkey, Israel, Tahiti, and Australia. Tops on my wish list is New Zealand.

Cats. I have a Sable Burmese.

Scottish festivals. I'm fortunate to live where the largest one in the Western Hemisphere is held every Labor Day weekend (it's in Pleasanton, CA, in the San Francisco Bay Area). I have a kilt in the Modern Henderson tartan with both a casual tweed jacket outfit and a formal Prince Charlie to go with it.

Music. I played cello in grade school, trombone in junior high and high school, and dabbled in piano, guitar, and hammer dulcimer, but I have zero musical talent. My favorite live act (besides symphonic performances) is guitarist Leo Kottke, and I love the closing ceremonies of the Caledonian Club of San Francisco Highland Games, where they gather all 750 pipers who are at the Games for the competition, and they all play in what passes for unison at the closing ceremonies each day. You haven't lived until you've heard Amazing Grace and Scotland The Brave played by 750 pipers, though that may strain the definition of the word "music" for some.

Writing. I've published four books on various versions of Microsoft Office for Macintosh, all for Peachpit Press, but none recently, and I'm not really interested in doing any more writing for pay.

Macintosh. I bought my first one in September, 1984, and have been actively involved in the community ever since.

Bodywork. I've been trained in a wide variety of bodywork modalities and was licensed as a massage therapist when I lived in Texas. My favorite style is watsu, developed here in California at Harbin Hot Springs. It's a variety of massage done in a warm pool.

Human Potential workshops. I'm fortunate to live as close as I do to Esalen and several other great retreat centers.

Space Science (DUH!). My BA is in Physics with a concentration in Space Science from Rice University in Houston. One of my professors, Curt Michel, was briefly an Apollo astronaut. My senior project was assisting grad students who were duplicating in the lab chemical reactions with metastable helium that occur in the upper atmosphere of Mars. Vacuum pumps and dewars of liquid nitrogen are way cool.

Psychotherapy. I have an MA in Clinical Psychology and was licensed as a Marriage & Family Therapist in Texas, though most of my life I have worked in software technical support.

The space program (duh!). I was fortunate enough to be an acquaintance of one of the Shuttle astronauts (Pinky Nelson) and have a patch that he gave me from one of his flights. I also got to hear him play in the rock band composed of astronauts, Max Q, at Johnson Space Center at a party for NASA personnel.

I spent most of my childhood deeply involved with Boy Scouts, and made Eagle with bronze palm. I've been to Philmont three times and attended the 1964 Jamboree in Valley Forge. I'm disillusioned with them now, for their stance on gays.

1960's computing. While I was in undergraduate school, I had a part-time job with IBM and got to play with all their System 360 hardware plus a couple of 1130's. I still have a copy of a System 360 program that makes the line printer "sing" Anchors Aweigh. I am very privileged to live only a couple of miles from the Computer History Museum in Mountain View, CA.

Podcasts. My very favorite is Radiolab, produced by WNYC, but I also thoroughly enjoy the podcast versions of some favorite NPR shows (Car Talk, Wait Wait Don't Tell Me, etc.), Spider (Robinson) On The Web, and about a dozen others.

I guess that's most of it, but I have a vague sense that I'm leaving something out. Oh, well.

_________________
“Don’t believe everything you see on the Internet.” –Abraham Lincoln


Thu Apr 24, 2008 12:10 am
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Post Re: Your OTHER Interests?
Jeez...I feel insignificant now. lol.


Thu Apr 24, 2008 3:47 am
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