In person, I'm pretty easygoing. I like to spend a lot of free time reading, both on current events and random books that get recommended to me, and sometimes down wikipedia rabbit holes. I'd say I'm fairly idealistic, but flexible when facts contradict my opinion.
I grew up in a small rural town in New York State, but I've lived in small or large cities since college, and I can't picture going back to the country, but there are things about it that I miss, like the stillness and stars at night, the smells of fresh cut grass and hay, and the sound of birds making their music. But cities just have way too much going on for me to stay away.
Apart from work, my main hobby is square dancing, which may sound hokey, but is actually quite complex and interesting. Dancing to me is partly a celebration of the fact that we are anything at all, but at the higher levels, square dancing adds a thinking component that I also enjoy.
Listening. Explaining things.
Taking a step back and thinking about why something happened.
Judging how much I'll like a movie based on the preview.
Movies: I watched a bunch in the late 90's so there's kind of a bias there, but: Fight Club, The Big Lebowski, Spirited Away, The Bourne trilogy, anything by Joss Whedon, Blue/White/Red by Kieslowski, After Hours, How To Train Your Dragon, The Thin Red Line.
TV shows: 30 Rock, The Wire, Avatar: The Last Airbender, Firefly.
The Last Airbender is a kids cartoon with a surprising amount of depth. It deals with topics like genocide, reluctance to embrace one's destiny, pride, balance, growing up in a country that is dominating the world and discovering what life is like outside that country, struggling against your upbringing to decide the best way to live your own life, whether it's ethical to steal from pirates, and many other things. I highly recommend it.
Music: Mostly, indie and electronica, stuff that white people like. Lately: Boards of Canada, Wye Oak, Washed Out, Avicii, Bon Iver, Rodrigo y Gabriela ("Tamacun" is awesome!), other random stuff like "Havoc" by Gregory Douglass, "Young Blood" by The Naked and Famous.
Food: Stuff with cheese in it, like pizza, burritos, and grits. Thai food also.
- Getting out into the big wide world to explore new places
- My laptop
- A desk with a nice view of the outdoors
- Some quiet time to catch up on reading
What life will be like in 10 or 20 years, given that computers are getting exponentially faster, and also sequencing and synthesizing genomes are also getting exponentially faster.
Whatever random web link has most recently caught my attention, like the Mongol sack of Baghdad in 1258.