Non-gaming hobbies

I have a bunch of hobbies, for reasons. “Collecting” is for me both a hobby and a “meta-hobby”, since I tend to collect things connected to most of my hobbies.

So, besides gaming…

I’ve been a reader since early childhood, so I have a small library of mostly sci-fi, Fanta and horror novels and short story collections. There’s some mysteries and a bunch of classics in there as well, along with books on history, philosophy, science, architecture, jewelry and art.

Collecting both seashells and turtles goes back basically as far.

I have been an artist (pencil, pen & ink, pastels, acrylics, and some assembled sculptures) since 4th grade. That has led me into doing jewelry design, which in turn led me into collecting gems.

Because my Mom was a music teacher, I got into music very early as well. I sing, play cello, acoustic & electric guitar, and bass guitar…with varying degrees of proficiency.😜 Electric guitar is a terrible hobby to get involved in, because there’s LOTS of different things to buy, and thus collect. (Which I do.)

I also have an extensive music collection, covering a wide variety of genres.

It’s funny to me how many people consider cooking a hobby. I sorta get it, but for me, it’s always been “serious business.”

Don’t get me wrong- I really enjoy the creative aspect of it, and that’s been an increasingly important aspect of doing it (for several reasons). It’s a crucial life-skill for me, though, so I don’t think of it in the same way as I do things I call hobbies.

...although, if I’m being fair, I have accumulated pots, cooking gizmos and utensils almost like it was a hobby.😁
I wonder if you'll get an episode on the show Hoarders or American Pickers first. Either way, it sounds like it's going to be one of the more interesting shows as they go through all your crazy collections.
 

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Mad_Jack

Legend
I forgot the best one: going to heavy metal shows

Plus beer

There was one point where, for almost five years, I'd make a point of going to almost any older show that came through the local venue - I always regretted not seeing the Dead before Jerry died, and the local casino (which is only a mile from my house) has both a 10,000 seat arena and a much smaller free open venue out on the casino floor, both of which get a bunch of really big name acts from past decades coming through.
Bob Dylan, The Who, Meatloaf, Heart, Judas Priest, The Guess Who, Herman's Hermits... Basically, anytime someone I'd heard of was playing I'd go see them, whether I was into them or not - I've seen both MC Hammer and Salt and Pepa there just to say I've seen them and add them to my extremely eclectic list of shows. There are lots of folks who have a more extensive list of concerts they've seen but the variety of my list is still fairly impressive for someone who isn't into music as their main thing.


Woodworking, gardening, brewing, soap making, drawing, cooking, baking, food preservation, painting, and leather working are the big ones.

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One of my current side-projects that I need to get back to is forging a knife... I'm doing it "redneck" style, though - I'm using a high-heat blowtorch to heat up a steel rod I found in the garage, a 2-lb. sledge and some bodywork hammers to beat it with, and a flat spot on my old man's bench-vise as an anvil. :p

I've also got three big 1-gallon glass jugs that I scored from my previous job at the toothpaste factory (they used to contain isopropyl alcohol) that I'm planning to someday use for making mead.


It’s funny to me how many people consider cooking a hobby. I sorta get it, but for me, it’s always been “serious business.”

Don’t get me wrong- I really enjoy the creative aspect of it, and that’s been an increasingly important aspect of doing it (for several reasons). It’s a crucial life-skill for me, though, so I don’t think of it in the same way as I do things I call hobbies.

...although, if I’m being fair, I have accumulated pots, cooking gizmos and utensils almost like it was a hobby.😁

That's what I consider to be the hobby portion of it - investing your "recreational" funds in cooking fancy meals for your friends for no particular reason, saving up to buy expensive pots and pans if you're not actually a chef, growing your own herbs, picking out individual onions at an organic co-op when you're just going to be caramelizing them, etc.
(I rarely ever eat lasagna, because it takes forever to make, but about once a year or so, I get the urge to do up a pan of it.)
Cooking/baking just to feed yourself/your family is an entirely different thing than hobby cooking/baking.
 


Ryujin

Legend
There was one point where, for almost five years, I'd make a point of going to almost any older show that came through the local venue - I always regretted not seeing the Dead before Jerry died, and the local casino (which is only a mile from my house) has both a 10,000 seat arena and a much smaller free open venue out on the casino floor, both of which get a bunch of really big name acts from past decades coming through.
Bob Dylan, The Who, Meatloaf, Heart, Judas Priest, The Guess Who, Herman's Hermits... Basically, anytime someone I'd heard of was playing I'd go see them, whether I was into them or not - I've seen both MC Hammer and Salt and Pepa there just to say I've seen them and add them to my extremely eclectic list of shows. There are lots of folks who have a more extensive list of concerts they've seen but the variety of my list is still fairly impressive for someone who isn't into music as their main thing.
Makes me think of Fallsview and Rama, here in Ontario, Canada. Both seem to get big name old acts on the regular.
 

gamerprinter

Mapper/Publisher
I've never been a collector of anything, nor a crafter of any kind. I know there are 'hobbies' that exist outside the game, though unsure if I engaged in any of them (I don't think I have). There are even sub-hobbies within the game like collecting game content and art, painting miniatures, creating 3D terrain - each could be defined as it's own hobby. I don't do that either. One could argue that the art I create is a hobby unto itself, except almost all art I create are maps, deck plans, hand-drawings to 3D illustrations and all of it, I use as content for game supplements that I publish. Maybe the act of game design, creating illustratons and maps, writing prose and game mechanics, setting design, graphic design, page layout and publishing itself, are each a different possible 'hobby', but I do all of that simultaneously as a collective hobby. However, it doesn't conform to this discussion since all of that 'collective hobby' is not 'non-gaming', so I guess, my non-gaming hobbies are non-existent. I spend all my time, work and play with gaming.
 
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Richards

Legend
I also used to design and build board games on rare occasions, when my nephew was much younger. So far I've a board game designed around Godzilla/Gamera/other kaiju franchises, one based on Ultraman, and two separate board games built around the Skylanders console games. (I seem to have this bad habit of building my homemade board games around franchises with product identity I'm not able to use, which puts the real kibosh on me ever getting any of them looked at by a serious board game company.) I also built the "Superhero Harry" game for my nephew when he was a wee lad, which he helped me draw the board images for when he was about 5 years old, but even that reaches out to use product identity from "The Incredibles," so it'll just remain a board game that sees use in my own family and nowhere else. (Actually, I took that concept and stretched it into the family of one of my coworkers who had a lot of young children, so I made an identical game featuring versions of them based on DC superheroes for their copy of the game, which I gave to them for Christmas one year. But still unmarketable.)

We still have a lot of fun getting them out every now and again, though.

(Edit: I suppose this whole post is only "non-gaming related" if we assume we're just talking about non-RPG gaming. Otherwise, this whole post breaks the initial premise of the thread, for which I apologize.)

Johnathan
 

I think gaming can be considered my main hobby (mainly TTRPGs, but also video games, and, to a lesser extend, board games).
Other than that I like to read - mostly fantasy and sci-fi stuff (broadly speaking, so incl. cyberpunk, urban fantasy), occasionally also classics (Dante, Kafka, etc.) or non-fiction books.
And I do spent a significant amount of time listening to and discovering music (mostly dark ambient, atmospheric black metal and dungeon synth), though I don't really spent hours browsing magazines, or hanging out in clubs and at festivals like I used to when I was younger.
I also do a bit of sports, but I hit the gym less often than I want to (or I should), so I'm not sure if that can be considered a hobby.

There's a couple of other things, I theoretically would like to get into (in particular: drawing, typography and layout) or I want to spend more time with (bumping up my English language skills, cooking more elaborate stuff). Yet, even though I have more time again since mid of 2021, it doesn't really happen. So probably also doesn't count.
 

Just wondering what kind of hobbies people have, which are not gaming related. Until about a two-years ago, I worked for a company which paid quite well but was a terrible experience. Too much stress. Too much work and the pay did not match. I basically had one job which replaced three different positions in 6 regions across the country, and three time-zones. One of the time-zones being HST (Hawaii). I’m in Miami, so it was about 5-6 hours difference, depending on daylight savings. It got to the point where I had no use for days of the week. I worked way too much, and I had way too much stress. There were days I had to meet with the therapists I was training and supervising at 2:00 am my time because of the time difference.

So… I decided I needed a hobby… err… hobbies. I wanted to get back into gaming, but I’m fairly sure I’m not the only person that has gotten a group together only for it to fall apart rather quickly. Weekly gaming sessions turned into weekly cancellations. I figured I may as well try and find something non-gaming related. I got into rock climbing, which I haven’t done in a bit, due to injuring my wrist. It’s great, though. Probably the most calming hobby I picked up. Once I’m up on the wall, I stop thinking about anything else except where my hand or foot is going next. It’s amazing. I miss it. Waiting to get back into it.

I decided I wanted to change my car without having to buy a new car, so I got into learning about wrapping cars. I know, it doesn’t seem like something that would be a hobby. Stupid me thought otherwise. All the YouTube videos made it seem so easy. They are all liars! I thought it would be another hobby I could have that would get my mind off work and not be stressful. After spending I don’t know how many hours watching videos and trying it out on small items, like a laptop protective case and similar items, I decided I needed to try it on my car. ~ $2K and 3 of the most frustrating hours later, I wrapped the hood and trunk of my car, and gave up wrapping cars as a hobby. I still have about 30 sqft of car vinyl wrap material.

Figured I may as well try and get into something that won’t end up costing me as much and won’t be too wasteful if I gave up on it, so I started drawing again. I haven’t been drawing seriously in about 20 years, so no, you will not be seeing my amazingly abstract stick figures any time soon. I have an overpriced iPad Pro with and overpriced Apple Pencil, so I use that to draw. Saves on paper. Saves on pencils and ink and colors.

August/September of last year I decided I wanted to get into photography because who needs to have any money saved? Photography and rock climbing seem to be the two hobbies I enjoy the most. I figured I world start with a lower end camera, so I started looking at buying a Sony A1. Fortunately, the rational part of my brain said, “Hell no!” So, I ended up with a Sony A7C. Still fairly expensive but not as expensive as the A1. I needed some lenses, of course, so I started off with a cheap 50mm. Then I wanted more lenses because I figured I could lose some weight by not eating. Fortunately, I found some relatively inexpensive lenses. They are all about $250-$300, so the money I’ve managed to save on each lens has been made up for by the number of lenses I've bought. Now I have a list of much higher quality lenses I want to get. It seems photography has given me two hobbies: taking pictures and collecting gear.

Any ways, what are you guys doing besides gaming?

I used to play guitar and write music (these days not quite as much). I also was pretty passionate about martial arts and boxing. Mostly I just work out at home now but I would like to start classes somewhere local for some low key martial arts again (my body is just not able to handle what it used to and I have to take it more easy). I also collect Kung Fu and Wuxia movies. Not sure it qualifies as a hobby but history is an interest outside gaming and I read a lot of history books. I also like visiting local historical sites.
 

Waterbizkit

Explorer
I'm an avid coffee addict, and I've been wanting to get into the whole coffee brewing thing. I just end up going other things. So, what do you recommend to start off with? I've always wanted to grind coffee fresh when I'm ready to make it. What burr grinder would you suggest?

Coffee can be a dangerous rabbit hole to tumble down. I have several other friends who love their coffee but think I'm nuts. :p

In terms of a low cost entry for a better everyday cup, I'd recommend pour over. The Hario V60 is a classic, well respected pour over dipper. You can pick them up in plastic, glass, and ceramic all for short money. I own a dripper called the Stagg, from a company called Fellow I just happen to like. Chemex is another popular one, though I'd go Hario over Chrmex myself.

The grinder is more important, and what you asked about to begin with. There are a lot of good brands and types of burr grinder out there. Manual grinders will give you a little more bang for your buck, but of course that's because it's manual and you're doing all the work.

Ultimately it depends on what your budget is and what you like. The grinder I currently use for everything except espresso is the Fellow Ode Gen 2. Fellow also just came out with a lower priced grinder that's supposed to cover all the bases called the Opus.

Some other popular grinder brands are Baratza and Eureka. My espresso grinder is a Eureka for example. You can fall deeper down the rabbit hole and find grinders that cost thousands, but that's not necessary. I would recommend finding something better than a blade grinder though.

After that you'll need a simple gooseneck kettle. Again, you can go nuts here, like I eventually did. My electric gooseneck can be programed to the degree, can hold temp for 30 minutes if I want it to, set a schedule so it goes on and off on its own... in other words, a bunch of stuff no normal person needs when a $15 kettle will boil water just as well. :p

A simple scale will help too. You can always eyeball it, but good coffee is about ratios. 15:1 water to coffee is a solid starting point and the best way to know you're hitting that is to measure your coffee and your water. You can get cheap coffee scales on Amazon that are fine, but like everything else in this hobby there's an absurdly priced option out there somewhere. This is one piece of the puzzle I haven't taken the plunge on. Somehow the scale is my line in the sand, of all things.

It's like any hobby of course, the deeper you go, the more ridiculous it gets. What should be something simple gets more complicated and more expensive. If you start getting into espresso things start getting even more expensive because good espresso machines are not cheap. Flair does some really nice manual machines, which can be more affordable.

Anyway, I've have rambled something fierce. Less than about $30 on a dripper, a kettle, and maybe a couple of hundred on a good grinder will open up a lot. But be sure you want to make the jump. There's $2000 of coffee nonsense on my coffee cart because I had to keep getting more. Jesus, I needed a coffee cart because I have so much crap my wife wanted the counter space back.
 

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