You Call That Fun?

I did a little research before writing this article and Googled “unusual hobbies.” One of the largest sub-categories in my Google hits was “Strange Collections.” I learned that some people make a hobby of collecting air sickness bags, handcuffs, cigar wrappers, and (it sickens me to type this) navel fluff. Other people engage in unbelievable competitive sports such as “extreme ironing,” in which participants find the most challenging places on earth, such as on the side of a mountain, to accomplish removing wrinkles from a shirt using a traditional iron and ironing board. Others make a hobby of following the “fighting beetle circuit” or they create art by carving egg shells. Members of one enthusiastic hobbyist group practice the art of catching thrown javelins. Some of the photos I saw still haunt me.

It was not necessary for me to consult Google to come up with pastimes that seem to me more like torture than fun. One of these is the putting together of 2000-piece jigsaw puzzles. Why would anyone find it relaxing to put together a puzzle whose pieces are the size of baby teeth? In addition, who can suspend the use of their dining room table for the six years it takes to complete one? I suspect that the overcrowding of our prisons might be eliminated if, instead of being sentenced to serving a certain number of years behind bars, convicts were sentenced to completing ten to twenty 2,000-piece jigsaw puzzles. Surely, the very threat of such a penalty would scare straight even the most hardened criminal.

I refuse to participate in any activity that involves being out in the cold. Thus, ice skating, sledding, snow skiing, snowboarding or polar bear swimming are not options for me. A few years ago a group of friends asked me to accompany them to Chicago in December for a day of Christmas shopping. Were they kidding me? Had those people never heard the term “lake effect winds?” I declined, stating that instead I would just crawl inside my freezer and spend the day gnawing on raw meat.

I want no part of any pastime that involves mathematics. Therefore, playing Sudoku is out of the question for me, as is the solving of riddles, especially those beginning with the words, “Two trains left separate stations . . .”

Please do not ask me to meet you at the gym for a workout. I don’t like to sweat, lift heavy objects, put on leotards, experience leg cramps or push the envelope on my occasional urinary incontinence.

I can no longer see well enough to attempt intricate embroidery projects; plus, I got tired of finding lost needles by stepping on them with bare feet. I tried my hand at quilting, but when I spread my project out on the floor so my husband could admire it, he asked, “Did you intend for it to be in the shape of a parallelogram?”

It seems that I am left with only one viable hobby option: writing. I do sometimes get eyestrain from staring at the computer monitor and headaches from trying to retrieve from my brain the exact word I am looking for, and yes, I may occasionally be embarrassed by letting such errors as split infinitives, dangling participles, comma splices, pronoun-antecedent disagreements, and run-on sentences like this one creep in, but my readers generally forgive me if the article makes them smile.

Thus, whether it is collecting four-leaf clovers or flying remote control planes, here’s to your success in finding the perfect pastime for you! Cheers!

10 thoughts on “You Call That Fun?”

  1. Debbie this was a fun read. You are very funny! Puzzle pieces the size of teeth, collecting naval fuzz! That is just crazy! Thanks!

  2. Collecting navel fluff?! That’s just weird. Makes me wonder whether the collectors of the airline sickness bags collect them pre- or post- use! As for Sudoku, riddles, and puzzles, I get those things and find them enjoyable myself. You’ve discovered your perfect hobby, Debbie! Writing is your thing – keep it comin’. Happy Birthday! I love you, girl!

  3. I have just watched a movie that kept you in my mind the whole time. ” From Time to Time ” is set in the U.K.,Maggie Smith was the biggest name I recognized, and I thought the story was fun to watch!!! I kept thinking ” I wish I was watching this with Debbie .” I got it from the library,of course.I had put it on hold.Can’t say how new it is, but I sure liked it!!! Bonnie.

    1. Bonnie,

      Thanks so much for reading and commenting on my blog. I would love to sit down and watch a movie with you! I’ll see about getting “From Time to Time” with Maggie Smith. Thanks for recommending it.

      Tell me which one of these movies you have NOT seen but would be interested in watching with me:

      The Perfect Murder (Michael Douglas)
      Fracture (Anthony Hopkins)
      K-Pax (Kevin Spacey)

      We’ll make a date and I can go to your house or you can come to mine.


    1. Ken,

      The diet plan is going well for me.  I am not scheduled to weigh again until Monday.  My weight loss at first was faster than it is now.  I’ve lost only about 11 or 12 pounds, but I feel much, much, much better. 

      I think the feeling better is brought about by two things.  First, I am eating better foods and avoiding bad foods.  I am completely off of diet sodas.  I ordered a Diet Coke at a restaurant last weekend and drank maybe three drinks of it total.  It tasted awful.  Maybe it was just a bad Diet Coke or maybe my taste buds are conditioned now to recognize nasty stuff that they used to think was delicious.  Secondly, I think I feel better because I know I am doing something right.  I am not discouraged by the slowing down of weight loss.  I am eating less, eating better and feeling better.  The weight will come off.  I am confident of that.

      Everything is harder for Dan.  He so despises his job, gets no “lunch break” and has to eat while working.  We’ve really changed what we pack for him to eat at night–many more vegetables and fruits and nuts.  Still, I think he may be eating too many nuts.  I haven’t asked him about his weight loss lately but I am confident that he too is losing slowly.  I have seen a definite improvement in his attitude.  He is less depressed and more positive, but the fact remains that he hates his job and that takes a big toll.  We both no longer mind the shakes in the morning.  They are just a regular part of our day.

      Thanks so much, Ken, for introducing us to this product and for encouraging us to stick with it.  I have no interest at all in giving up. 

      Watch for another, unrelated email from me.


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