56Austin, United States
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My self-summary
For what it's worth...

I'm the guy that every woman sees as the great big brother she wished she had. Yep, I'm a nice guy. Yuck! I'm not sexy, not exciting, but I will make you laugh.

My political and social beliefs are mostly very liberal Democrat but can sometimes wander over into Libertarian. Would you like to make fun of Republicans with me?

What gives me joy...
I like reading, museums, board games, birding, and hiking. I love camping (or did when I was in better shape). With very little prompting, I was happy to drive to Big Bend or New Mexico. I like to travel, but not alone: the fun of it is in the sharing. Lately I've gotten a stronger urge to travel.

And I love sitting around discussing whatever things seem weird in the universe. I am an intelligent man who greatly appreciates intelligent women. Too many women seem to think it's necessary to "dumb down" to be accepted; that ain't right!

I also have a great respect for honesty: people who are up-front about saying what they mean and meaning what they say.

Most of all, I like to laugh, and I like to make others laugh, and I'm pretty good at it, if I do say so myself. A sense of humor is a glorious thing, so I hope you have a big shiny one!

Shortly after moving into my house eight years ago, I was adopted by a cat from down the street; I tried to discourage her, yet here she is. She's actually the third cat to do that in my life. Animals love me, but I wish not quite so much.

What I'm not so good with...
• I'm not religious, and I don't understand people who want to impose their hates and intolerances on others. I don't have anything against religion as long as it doesn't promote evil, like intolerance or being a primary focus of your life. Still, if you list yourself as "serious" about your religion, regardless of which one — or your "spirituality", for that matter — I doubt we'll get on well. Needless to say, fundamentalism is seriously suspect. As long as you believe in treating other people as you'd like to be treated, that's enough for me.
• My house is a mess, as is my office. I keep them sort of clean, but orderliness escapes me.
• I care nothing for sports. If you're dying to share season tickets, better to take someone else. If you like to watch an occasional game, that's okay, and I may even watch with you as long as you don't expect me to know the rules.
• I'm very monogamistic by nature. To those interested in p0lyam0ry, that's not something I'd be comfortable with.
• I don't care for exercise for its own sake. But I do try.
• I like being on water (think: boat), but I'm not big on being in water (I'm not a strong swimmer, and I don't much like being wet). I only mention this because it seems to be a popular topic in profiles.
What I’m doing with my life
I was a webmaster, graphic artist, and photographer, all in one mostly great job. I got laid off. That's right, you heard me: I am unemployed. I'm not hurting for money, mind you, but I really should find another job... I have nearly enough to retire on, as long as I don't live too long. :•)
I’m really good at
• making you laugh, often about stuff you didn't even think was funny.
• conversation that travels to all depths and any extreme.
• opening jars, any jars at all.
• choosing colors (Yes, colors: if you're trying to match drapes to upholstery, I'm your man. I'm a graphic artist, among other things, and I have fantastic color sense.)
• spoonerisms. I tip over my trungue, sometimes even nabble bonsense.
• not losing my temper: extremely non-temperamental. I've actually had people get angry with me for not getting angry. I do suffer from life's irritations, mind you; I just don't lose it over 'em.

I'm really bad at
• asking someone out; I'm rather shy, so that's hard for me. Funny, though, as I'm not shy about much else.
• thinking of fun things to do. I love doing fun things, I just can't think of them ahead of time. (This is also a hindrance with regard to the previous item.) I am, for example, notoriously hopeless about thinking up Halloween costume ideas.
• dancing, but I want to anyway.
• holding a grudge; I tend to forgive and forget.
The first things people usually notice about me
• I say "howdy" in a non-ironic way.
• Maybe my hair. It's the only thing I have even a trace of vanity about: I have hardly any gray (except in my beard), and it's thick and soft and has no bare spots. I'm immodestly happy about that.

These may not be the first things but come pretty quickly after:
• I can find something funny about any subject. I try to eschew blatantly inappropriate comments, but sometimes...
• I can talk a lot.
• I'm hard to categorize — my opinions aren't always what people expect.
• People think I'm outgoing because I'm pretty uninhibited, but I am actually quite shy; once I get to know you, much less so.
• I have a tendency to get "teachy", but I don't mind when people tell me to desist.
• I'm opinionated, but not judgmental.
Favorite books, movies, shows, music, and food
• I like to read science fiction (Jack Vance, Matthew Hughes, Lois Bujold, ...), fantasy (Lawrence Watt-Evans, Dave Duncan, Juliette McKenna, ...), mystery (Peter Robinson, Elizabeth George, Henning Mankell, Martha Grimes, ...), and non-fiction in a variety of subjects.
• My music taste ranges from 60s Beatles to Lady Gaga techno-dance-pop. I have a soft spot for 80s new-wave. All-time fave is Kate Bush. Trance-dance because I like to dance even though I look goofy doing it. I like classical music too, though I don't listen to it all that often. My tolerance for C&W or rap is pretty low. My tolerance for jazz is non-existent— please don't make me listen to jazz to convince me how great it is.
• Movie faves include Love Actually, Bridget Jones' Diary, Zulu, Koyaanisqatzi, The Gods Must Be Crazy. I like odd movies like Jarmush or Cohen Bros productions. I like foreign films; recently I really enjoyed the Lebanese movie Where Do We Go Now?. No, I do not like horror movies. Suspense is fine, but occult/slasher/psycho movies I do not enjoy.
• TV likes: The Big Bang Theory, NCIS, Doc Martin, Spaced, the West Wing, Masterpiece Theatre, Nova, Mystery. I watch almost no TV nowadays, and I don't get cable, either. I wish people would stop telling me how great shows on cable are.
• I like Scrabble, and I will grit my teeth and congratulate you if you beat me at it. If you beat me at it a lot, I will be awestruck. Other board and card games are fun too. I've recently re-taken up chess, which I'd gotten tired of back in college.
• I do like food, yes. I am a terrible cook, however, so I eat a lot of sammiches and froze-dins. Much better to go out! I like Mexican, American, Thai, Chinese, Persian, Italian. I will not eat sushi. And I do usually include meat; I'm not interested in being vegetarian.
Six things I could never do without
• Something to read
• Air conditioning (in the summer… and spring and fall… often in winter too; this is Texas after all)
• Coffee (tea will do in a pinch)
• Conversation
• Passionate kisses (well, I can live without them, but I don't want to)
I spend a lot of time thinking about
• language (if you speak one besides English, teach it to me)
• not spending so much time thinking about thinking about things. I really wish my brain had an "off" switch at times.

I don't think about chucking it all and living on a sailboat — though I do love sailing. However I do think about working in OkC's "big questions," if you know what I mean. If you don't, see the OkTrends article "The Best Questions For A First Date".
On a typical Friday night I am
reading a book or on-line, with my cat on my lap. Maybe I'm watching a movie from the library with a friend.
The most private thing I’m willing to admit
• I'm really bad at lying, so I avoid doing it. If you ask my opinion, I'll be honest (never to be mean). "Diplomatic" white lies are pointless. (This means my compliments are always sincere, by the way.)
• I almost died twice in 2010 from complications following routine surgery. I'm all well now, but it left me with difficulty losing that not-enough-exercise waistline. The experience also accounts for why I finally signed up here (Mar '11).
• If it's your thing, Myers-Briggs finds me hard to categorize: every version of personality test I take finishes with a different result! INTP seems to be the average, but I've gotten every 'letter' at least once.
You should message me if
• Have you answered enough questions so that the match percentages mean something? I always check out your questions to see how compatible our thinking is. If our "She cares about" and "I care about" questions are all out of sync, I'll have to refuse a kind inquiry, which makes me sad.
• you love a good conversation and love to laugh.
• you think you can beat me in Scrabble.

I've gotten very shy about messaging, so if you feel inclined, please go for it! If you've managed to make it this far through such a long profile, that could be a good sign.
The two of us