I enjoy conversation and language. In conversation, I find the ideas more important than the expression. In written works the elegance or depth of the language complements or detracts from the idea. I'm not a grammar snob, but I do appreciate memorable and thoughtful phrasing. I'm not often satisfied with my own efforts here, and of course there's a difference between serious writing and the everyday.
I also enjoy sitting back with a good beer and watching whatever I can find on Netflix (they have the whole run of Rocky and Bullwinkle, and that was a severe distraction for a while), playing the latest absurd computer game, or once in a while hitting the clubs. Even when I go out I don't usually dance, but it's fun to have an excuse to dress up a little, listen to loud music and drink with my friends. As I and my friends age this happens less and less often, but not never.
One of my former coworkers once accurately identified me as the kind of person who might own a cloak. I don't actually own a cloak, but I'm willing to admit to being the kind of person who might.
I live just outside Davis Square. Homeownership is not without its hassles, especially in an elderly triple-decker, but it beats paying rent. I love my city, old and occasionally creaky as it is.
I've done some acting and some stagehand work with my local community theater group. My enthusiasm outstrips my acting talent, but it's still fun - and theater people are usually the kind of people I get along well with, even if I'm on the quiet side by comparison. On the solitary side, I like walking or biking around the city when the weather's nice. For me, "nice" means parts of April, May, and October. I read constantly.
Learning new things from people who have something to say makes me happy, though I have a lazy streak and a well-defined comfort zone that makes the learning hard as much as for anyone else. And it's good to be reminded to read widely. For a while that meant evening classes at the Harvard Extension School, but eventually the combination of rising tuition and a bad experience with a neocon warmonger professor made me drift away. Still, that's the program for which I read a lot of Oscar Wilde and Icelandic sagas, and I enjoyed both of those no end. When I finally went to Iceland I was more interested in Þingvellir than Geysir, but I think I was the only one.
The TSA thinks I look like a terrorist. I've been stopped in airports because of this. Though that was at least one major hairstyle change ago.
Shakespeare, John Donne and T. S. Eliot are some of my favorite famous dead white men. Nabokov is my latest addition to that list. Wendy Cope gives them all a run for their money as my favorite poet. I've read a fair number of popular interest books on economics (Freakonomics and so on) but I'm not sure I'd really call those favorites.
I'm less of a packrat about movies. Some of my favorites are Donnie Darko, Grosse Point Blank, Boondock Saints (although I suspect I want it to be more tongue-in-cheek than the director did), and the first two Aliens movies. Or at least those are some of the ones I own.
Marvel's superhero movies work as well for me as the next geek, but I wouldn't call most of them art. Pacific Rim, on the other hand, was brilliant in its well-executed simplicity. The Illusionist was well worth a rental (back when that was a standard that mattered), as were Sweeney Todd, Brick and Sideways. I liked Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog as well as the next geek, but I thought the ending was too much of the usual Joss Whedon schtick.
I've never seen a Humphrey Bogart movie without at least some redeeming value.
My music's varied. A lot of it's mainstream within its genre, but I like many superficially incompatible genres. In other words, I might wear a Ministry tee shirt to a Dar Williams concert. I have a lot of Leonard Cohen, Love and Rockets, Bob Dylan, Bauhaus, Sisters of Mercy, Suzanne Vega, Siouxsie and the Banshees, the Pixies and the Pogues. In the indie category, the big names are Neutral Milk Hotel, the Decemberists, the Mountain Goats, the National and the New Pornographers. Florence + The Machine and Metric also move me.
I have a weakness for singer/songwriters, especially women with guitars; Erin McKeown is my favorite local example. Aimee Mann's up there too. Back when they still toured, I saw the Dresden Dolls live more times than I can easily count, but I haven't gotten much into Amanda Palmer's solo career.
My favorite foods usually involve garlic, capers, olives or some combination of the three. I prefer red wine to white.
My few but treasured close friends.
Ways to get outside my own head.
Some kind of home base, however temporary.
I used to go out to Man Ray, but since it closed I haven't found a Friday night event I enjoy enough to make a habit. Ex Mortis at T. T. the Bear's is worth it sometimes.