Bay-Area native. Marin kid, UCSB and UC Davis, lived in and around the Bay for most of my life. Folks have been in Chicago for (gasp) a quarter century now, so I know that area pretty well too. And now I'm here too.
I've been active most of my life: swimming, cycling, water polo, hiking/backpacking, rowing, lifting. I've found it pays off. Health-conscious omnivore, having considered (and tried) a few alternatives.
I've done less traveling than I'd like, though that's managed to rope in few trips to Germany, a few cross-country road-trips, and extensive meandering through California and the West, as well as 'Straya and En-Zed. Kilimanjaro, anyone?
While I like city amenities (culture, art, healthy food, backpacking supplies, walkable neighborhoods), when I need to recharge I head to the hills, the open highway, or beyond the end of the road.
There may or may not be a book in progress. I'm sort of working that out.
Staying fit, sane, informed, rested, and healthy occupy much of the rest of my time.
Books: pretty much anything Neal Stephenson's written, which isn't enough for my liking. Particularly fond of his heroines and hope to marry one some day. Recently a lot of economics, resource, and sustainability stuff. Bill McKibben, Vaclav Smil, Joseph Stiglitz, Robert Reich, Steve Keen, Dave Graeber, Simon Winchester, and a bunch of other stuff. For fun, lately, The Martian (and the movie, both fun), finally read The Great Gatsby, Dave Eggers, The Circle (too much like work). Infinite Jest is casting accusing looks at me from the bookshelf, and A Million Random Digits with 100,000 Normal Deviates. Honorable mentions to xkcd and Sinfest.
Movies: More often at home than out. Citizen Four, some oldies including Giant ("Mr. Benedict, why aren't you married?" plays a lot differently now than in 1956). And Deen really did have it. Lincoln.
Caught "Restrepo" (the filmmaker Tim Hetherington was killed in Libya in 2011). Epics can really get me: "The Last Emperor", "Lawrence of Arabia". And sometimes just plain fun: "Shanghai Noon", "Men in Black". I'm a lot more susceptible to a good romantic comedy than I should be.
Shows: Is this supposed to be TV or stage? Pretty much no TV. I'll catch the odd play or concert (CSO, live roots music) downtown. I do listen to NPR, particularly fond of "Selected Shorts", "On the Media", and usually the lecture shows (Cambridge Forum, City Arts & Lectures, etc.) , and the quiz/game shows (Wait Wait, Sez You). Terry Gross's "Fresh Air" has been improving with age.
Music: Wide and varied tastes from blues to indie rock to jazz, classical, and ancient music. Not so much for hip-hop/house/rap. Of contemporary and/or recently contemporary artists: Cowboy Junkies, Natalie Merchant, REM, Paula Cole, Miles Davis, Sutro, Paul Desmond, Dave Brubeck, Sting, Elvis Costello, Dylan, Lyell Lovett, Lambert Hendricks and Ross. Die, Lady Gaga, die .... OK. Maybe she's among the better of the current lot, but Goyte was a surprisingly good recent find (as well as the various covers of STIUTK). Some WXRT, but more WFMT.
Food: Yes. Preferably real (big Michael Pollan fan). Good food, well prepared, preferably simple, that's not going to kill me is best. Could be a fresh salad, a burger, tacos from a street vendor, or the odd fine dining experience (though frankly I really don't get the whole fixation on that). As much as I value quality, good, healthy food, I don't grok this whole "foodie" thing. Stuff I make in my own kitchen (or over a campstove) is best.
Everything else is optional, but a world lacking good espresso, rowing shells, mountains, warm lazy summer afternoons, Bach, cold bedrooms, free software, and power cages would sort of suck.
Apparently I also need an enumeration limiter.
Where the world's headed and what we're doing in this beautiful handbasket. How to convince the NY Times to see truth and light and adopt the Oxford comma. Making Bernie Sanders the nominee, the winner, and an effective agent of change as the incumbent. Plotting the popular uprising against skinny jeans. And shirts.
Why there's so little expression of intellectual interests among women on OKC. Yes, you may be one of the small set of people I just pinged out to -- and really, mostly just interested in like minds. There are six women, aged 21-80, on OKC who mention Bill McKibben. Five for Joseph Stiglitz. Noam Chomsky and Naomi Klein do somewhat better. Ha-joon Chang I think was two. Daniel Yergin zip (I actually came across his name messaging someone on OKC a ways back).
I'm not judgin', jes' sayin'.
But hey, if you are and said it, power to you. And if you are and weren't saying it, give it a shot.
A good time would be catching some live music, and a shot or two of Islay neat, and good conversation. At least for a start.
(Though I also have standards)