Sunday, May 22, 2011

Banishing Hobbies

by Jeffe Kennedy

The Word Whore who picked this topic - and I'm not naming names - described this week's theme of Fetishes as "any object, activity, etc., to which one is excessively or irrationally devoted - our non-writing hobbies."

My first response is: um, non-writing hobbies?

I used to have hobbies. Lots of hobbies, actually. I had a flower garden so beautiful and extensive it made the town Garden Tour. (Okay, it was a small town, but, hey...) I spent most of every warm-weather weekend in the garden, building character. Of course we had a shorter growing season than Fairbanks, Alaska, but there it is.

Since we moved to Santa Fe and have our self-sustaining xeriscape? Not so much.

Sewing used to be a huge part of my life, which included a near-obsessive habit of collecting fabric. I quilted. A lot. I even made a king-sized wedding ring quilt for one of my college roomies.

When we moved, I gave away the sewing machine and all but one trunk of fabric.

I practiced martial arts for many years, probably spending about 25 hours a week taking and teaching classes, not counting time spent training on my own. Now I do a little Tai Chi and meditate here and there.

I spent a lot of time in the past fixing up the house. I laid tile. David and I renovated a coal bin into an office. I painted walls, installed fixtures, repaired furniture. The new house? Haven't painted a thing.

All of that has been replaced by writing time. It became necessary, really. I needed to pick up my pace of writing, to concentrate more on longer stories. My day job already consumes a huge chunk of time. Everything else now goes to writing.

With one exception.

It's an old fetish, one I can never give up. I became addicted to little pieces when I was very young - I blame my mother. She'd give me some before bedtime, then I started sneaking it on my own. I've lost sleep over it, ignored friends and family, failed exams because I just had to have a little more.

Oh yeah - you all know what I mean.

Ah, reading. I shall never, ever give you up!


  1. I know exactly what you mean. A fetish? Who has time? Except for the books -

  2. Somehow the books never lose their place in our hearts, eh?

  3. Sadly enough, I misread your post title as "Banishing Hobbits" when I got it via email this morning. How disappointed I am now! ;-)

  4. I cannot tell you how relieved I am to have 'fetishes' defined for me again. Books aren't a fetish for me, they are a full blown addiction. I merely refuse to do anything to remedy that. Besides I could quit anytime I wanted. Really.

  5. I envy your ability to grow things...things that you meant to grow. I has Black Thumb. ~evil cackle~

  6. Allison, Hobbits were never allowed in the first place!

    I'm sure, Marcella. ~pat pat pat~

    Fortunately you live in an easy place for growing things, KAK!

  7. I'm envious of your Tai Chi ability...I may have to pick your brain. I've been investigating local schools to sign up. How long have you been doing Tai Chi? Do you have a preference for the martial style or the meditative one? Those are the only two flavors we seem to have locally.

  8. Hmm, 19 years? And really it's the school that places the emphasis on martial vs. meditative. Arguably the art encompasses both and it's up to the practitioner to place the emphasis. Let's chat about it!

  9. I don't have fetishes. Really I don't. So I like to crochet until my hands ache. How is that a fetish? Okay, and I really like coloring in my new coloring books, but it's a habit I can kick anytime. (I just rediscovered Crayola. 96 colors? It's like crack.) As for the book collecting... well, that's an investment not an addiction. And reading is research. Yeah, yeah, that's the ticket.

    Denial. It's not just a river in Egypt. ;o)

  10. LOL, B.E - yeah, that's it: RESEARCH!