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07 April 2005 @ 07:55 pm
question, poll--help?  
Important question--to me, because I'm trying to find things to do at night--what do you guys do in the evening hours? The fannish thing is a given; watch shows, read fiction, write it or at least ponder the fact that we're months overdue delivering the remainder of our donation stories, etc. But aside from that, how do you exist by yourself and whistle away the existential void? Hobbies? Exercise? Reading? Volunteering? Getting together with friends? I'm especially but not exclusively interested in what single (unattached) kidless people are up to, and also things that don't cost a lot of money--and obviously I'm thinking about things other than drink-fueled clubbing and so on. Not that I'm dissing people's fun, but you know.

I've already worked out today and I haven't been able to get myself into writing mode this past week or two, and I'm watching stuff on tape/DVD but it isn't enough to stem my restless anxious urges. I could read, but lately I'm going through books at a steady clip, and that's what my breakfast and lunchtime are for, and blah blah so on. I am edgy. And I seriously just don't get it: what do people *do* with their lives? Usually it feels like there is far too little time, but other times, it's just you and the couch and a reluctance to do practical things like laundry. It's days like this that I fear I simply don't know how to live--to exist as a meaningful lifeform.
light of other days: ballsiliadawry on April 8th, 2005 03:00 am (UTC)
Though not single, I'm in a distance thing that involves several hours' time difference and a few thousand miles -- I knit.

Strange, possibly.

But I enjoy it.
Anna S.eliade on April 8th, 2005 03:03 am (UTC)
Yes! I have a good friend who knits and I've been making a few small noises about having her teach me. There's the cost-of-yarn thing though. Not that I'm rejecting the idea, but this is what I get into with my therapist when she's suggesting I find alternative things to do. I'm like: seriously, lady, what *is* there to do that doesn't cost money? Other than walk in the park. Even a museum costs money. Money isn't a total barrier--actually I'm all too prone to spend it. That's the problem. ;)
(no subject) - iliadawry on April 8th, 2005 03:11 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - thebratqueen on April 8th, 2005 11:59 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - iliadawry on April 9th, 2005 12:01 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - thebratqueen on April 9th, 2005 12:04 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - iliadawry on April 9th, 2005 12:06 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - thebratqueen on April 9th, 2005 12:09 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - anaxila on April 8th, 2005 05:21 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - eliade on April 8th, 2005 06:12 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(Deleted comment)
Anna S.: angeleliade on April 8th, 2005 03:04 am (UTC)
I'm curious--you don't really have to answer--but do you read at home or in coffee shops?
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(no subject) - eliade on April 8th, 2005 06:12 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Rebellious Jezebelmaggiesox on April 8th, 2005 03:02 am (UTC)
I'm of absolutely no help whatsoever at the moment, as it's baseball season and there's invariably a game of some kind on- except for tonight, apparently, which explains why I'm on the computer.

Honestly? Cross-stitching. I know it sounds kind of boring and tedious, but you can make some really nice things and it helps me, at least, to center myself after a long day. Or, if you live an area conducive to it, there's always nice long walks to see what there is to be seen.
Anna S.: byzantiumeliade on April 8th, 2005 03:05 am (UTC)
My mom did a lot of things like cross-stitching. Great stuff. I never picked up any of her sewing and related skills, which I sometimes regret. Hmm.
(no subject) - anaxila on April 8th, 2005 05:22 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - robintcj on April 9th, 2005 05:46 am (UTC) (Expand)
LadyStarlightladystarlightsj on April 8th, 2005 03:03 am (UTC)
Knitting, walking the dog and IMing people. I'm very boring.
Anna S.: buffy_mooneliade on April 8th, 2005 03:06 am (UTC)
You could knit the dog. You would probably not get called boring, though people might look at you oddly. *g*
(no subject) - ladystarlightsj on April 8th, 2005 03:23 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - anaxila on April 8th, 2005 05:24 am (UTC) (Expand)
the kid with the bullet soul: HHr selfless (chelsea0403)exsequar on April 8th, 2005 03:05 am (UTC)
1) Do homework. Do lots and lots of homework. This probably does not help.

Neither will the rest of this list, so I'm just going to stop it there.

Sorry >.<

I have a feeling that once I'm out of high school (2 months OMG) I might start having the same issues. I'm not social at all. Hmmm. Maybe I can finally get to reading all that stuff I want to read.
Anna S.: hepburn_kjveliade on April 8th, 2005 03:08 am (UTC)
Strangely I often miss homework--or at least I miss the structured schedule and deadline-driven discipline of college. I hate structured schedules at work, though. Which is, um, irrelevant to anything. *g*

I have a feeling that once I'm out of high school (2 months OMG) I might start having the same issues. I'm not social at all. Hmmm. Maybe I can finally get to reading all that stuff I want to read.

Welcome to adulthood! A carnival thrill-ride of debt and anxiety! Er, no, no. Don't listen to me! It'll be great. :)
(no subject) - exsequar on April 8th, 2005 03:14 am (UTC) (Expand)
Pet: Angelspikeapetslife on April 8th, 2005 03:06 am (UTC)
I'm a single kidless person
I tend to read, either books or fanfiction, whatever's on hand. If I'm feeling restless I'll go for a long walk, or get out of the house to see a movie or go see what's new at the video store. Most of my friends aren't in this area, though going out with them for dinner/drinks/chat/whatever was my diversion of choice when I was living in NYC. But if you're feeling that restlessness, maybe the walking thing might help. Even half an hour gets the blood flowing and the body moving and tends to settle me, at least, and lets me sit on that couch with a clear and peaceful mind. *grin*
Anna S.: femme_spike_anniesjeliade on April 8th, 2005 03:10 am (UTC)
Re: I'm a single kidless person
ven half an hour gets the blood flowing and the body moving and tends to settle me, at least, and lets me sit on that couch with a clear and peaceful mind. *grin*

But what do you do once you're on the couch? *g* I guess that's where videos come in. Which eventually is where my restlessness loops back around and begins again.

I didn't know you lived in NYC--you're more in the country now, aren't you? I get that vague impression anyway. I'm rarely very clear on where people live. :)
also, I'm really broke! *G* - apetslife on April 8th, 2005 03:17 am (UTC) (Expand)
take to the sky: up up upjezebelz on April 8th, 2005 03:26 am (UTC)
Exer...what? I do a lot of not much in the evening hours - geek, play with the cats, geek, watch TV, geek, read. I'm married, though, and thereby automatically boring by societal standards. (Granted, I did the same things when I was single. Yes, I've always been an explosion of fun.) Back when I lived near my friends we'd do a indie movie night every week, which was pretty entertaining and relatively low-budget. I know it sounds lame, but you get enough people together and then go for coffee afterwards and even if the movie sucks, you've at least got something to talk about.

Cats, though. Cats are vital for filling the existential void. Because - cats! Plus they keep your feet warm.
Angelvalarltd on April 8th, 2005 03:34 am (UTC)
I work evenings.
I know, big help, Angel, and I'm not a singleton either.

But when I have to fill time:
I sew. I write. I vid. I cross-stitch. I crochet. I play computer games. I chat. I clean. I do laundry. I talk on the phone. I research. I watch movies (usually while crocheting or cross-stitching). I design costumes, cross-stitch patterns, afghans, clothes (pad of quad paper and a pencil). I bake. I draw.

raqsraqs on April 8th, 2005 03:35 am (UTC)

this has several cascading hobbies: trying new classes, watching tapes, going to shows, sewing costumes, buying stuff with which to make costumes... it's a whole thing.

other than that: write.

sit with the cat and watch tv.

i would go out and see friends but i live outside of NY (and have, for ten whole months) and i don't know anyone here. so actually about one weekend in four is traveling somewhere for work or to see someone i know.

i don't know what i do. it takes a fuck of a lot of time, though.
cmshaw: On Icecmshaw on April 8th, 2005 03:36 am (UTC)


i suppose that was predictable, eh?

i'm coming up on the same daunting question when curling season ends in two weeks, though. all of a sudden i'm going from three structured nights a week + the rest of the week cramming in laundry and housecleaning to wiiiiiide oooooopen spaaaaaaace. this time for real i'm going to try and take up a summer sport -- jogging, at the very least. other than that.... i mean, i know i used to do stuff. huh.
laurashapiro on April 8th, 2005 03:37 am (UTC)
Tonight is an exception, as I'm rarely online at night -- or, indeed, at the computer at all. My body has enough trouble with 9-to-5ing at a desk.

My typical evening is something like this:

1) Arrive home. Greet cat and SO with pets and smooches. Look at snail mail, if any.

2) Make dinner, usually a somewhat creative and satisfying process.

3) Eat with SO, while chatting about our day, our thoughts, this and that. Sometimes rampant geekdom ensues, sometimes it's politics, sometimes it's gooey lovemuffin stuff.

4) Relax while SO washes up. Sometimes this is floptime on the sofa with the cat, sometimes a brief mail check, etc.

5) Consume expensive chocolate while watching television (often something on DVD that we're sharing with each other) or reading.

6) Fall asleep.

It's all very exciting, I know. Friday nights are "date night", and we actually leave the house to go do fun things (movies, dancing, bowling, fancy dinners, etc.). Thursdays, when he has a night class, I will work on a vid if my back is up to it.
Barbrahirah on April 8th, 2005 03:43 am (UTC)
Reading, writing, playing computer RPGs, sometimes going out to a club to hear a good local band (are clubs off-limits completely? I go with friends and we mostly talk and listen to music, and the ones who dance dance. Not me. I have no dance.) I want to get into non-computer RPGing again at some point, even if I have to break down and run a game myself. That's practically a full-time job in itself.

I used to draw a lot, but I haven't been in an art mood for the last few years.
(Deleted comment)
nzlauranzlaura on April 8th, 2005 03:57 am (UTC)
I don't know about Anna, but I'm all inspired to start frequenting poetry readings now - sounds fun. Thanks!
(no subject) - eliade on April 8th, 2005 04:06 am (UTC) (Expand)
nzlauranzlaura on April 8th, 2005 03:54 am (UTC)
I'm at uni, so there's a lot of assignments and readings. But when I'm free...

Reading, all sorts, online and off. Am reading a bit more nonfiction now that I used to, and find it's good to have books that inspire projects of whatever kind. I read this book recently about enriching your life (*dies of the cheesiness*), but it was good and I got lots of ideas. I keep a gratitude journal now - if I can write down five good things about a day it seems a lot more worthwhile, even if they're silly! And I like making sort of collages, in a scrapbook, of things I like - clothes, poems, quotes, photographs from magazines or whatever.

Visiting friends. Most of my friends in my city live 15-60 minutes walk away, so it's handy to just pop round for a chat, and since we're all poor students it's all very casual - might eat a pb&j sandwich and coffee with them, but that's about it! Sometimes a group of us will meet up for at a BYO cheap Malaysian restaurant. We're planning shared meal nights though, where we'll all bring a different dessert or type of food along which should be fun.

Myself and another friend want to set up a bookclub this year - don't know if it will happen but should be good.

I sometimes like to just wander the streets in the evenings, people watching, see who's about, you never know who you might run into or what could happen.

Theatre, movies, music. I don't know about where you are, but in Wellington there's often really cheap theatre and musical performances, sometimes free, put on by students and the like.

Trying out new recipes. Food is good.
akam1 on April 8th, 2005 03:58 am (UTC)
After work I usually come home, turn on the tv, watch something on TIVO, and, while watching, talk to Spouse about what he did that day (he's retired and stays home all day). Eat supper while watching a DVD. Check my email. Go to bed. Lather, rinse, repeat. Weekends, usually, I'm on the computer, I watch something on TIVO or DVD, maybe go to a store if there's something I need. Very occasionally, we will do something different.

Here's a list of things I have done in the past to feel like I'm doing something different that cost little or nothing. Most are done in the house or on weekends since I really don't like to wander around at night. However, I get bored easily so none of this lasts long.

Get/find a cardboard box. Cut it apart so you have some flat pieces. Find/steal/buy newspapers, magazines, construction paper, etc. anything with color, pictures, designs. Cut them up. Spend an hour, without gluing anything down, arranging pieces on the cardboard. Repeat as necessary. If you do actually find an arrangement you like, glue them down. Admire your artistic prowess for a day or so and then throw it away. Start again. It's kinda fun and, for me, gives my brain a break from the way it's usually used since I am not in the least artistic.

Not good for evening/night but: Drive or walk around a neighborhood you've never been to before, especially an older neighborhood (or even your own if you haven't seen more than just the streets you usually drive/walk). Consider who lives in each house, what they do, where they are in their lives, etc. Who lived there before, who built it, etc. Great for exercising your imagination.

Also not good for night/evening: Go to an older graveyard (if they aren't gated off for some reason). Read the gravestones, look at the designs, etc. You can find some really neat tombstones sometimes. Over the years I've seen many designs, emblems and references to things that have interested me enough to look up and learn what they are.

Read the history of your town or neighborhood. Also good to visit the graveyards after reading about the history of the town because you then might recognize some names. The library usually has lots of stuff and so does the internet.

Museums. Not the main one(s), the smaller ones. Sometimes there are art districts that have small museums that, to me at least, are bizarre and half the fun is figuring out why anyone would think it was art in the first place.

Take a cheap adult education class (through the school district or church or whoever offers that kind of stuff) in something odd or completely unlike you. They are usually cheap or cheapish, don't run very long and are intended for people who work. You get out of the house and, since it's not serious, you can just enjoy it and not feel like you have excel.

Flea markets and thrift stores are usually interesting even if you don't buy anything. And, sometimes, you can find unexpected bargains.

Here in Texas a lot of the small towns around have market days or something similar once a month. We sometimes will just pick one, drive there, wander around the booths for a few hours, and then come home. We never see anything we would ever consider buying but it's fun to see what people are selling and what kind of stores they have in towns with no malls and no Walmart.

I often find myself researching something I saw in a movie, especially historical movies. It's fun for me to see how much research the writers of the movie have done or if they just made it up, partially or completely.

I tried volunteering for a very short time but found I just couldn't do it. I had to actually talk to people, you know, in person and everything, and, since I dislike people in general, I couldn't do it. You might have better luck.

The only real hobby I ever had, besides reading, was stamp collecting and that costs money. Sometimes lots of money.

We tried bowling, which was fun for a short while, and doesn't cost much if you just play one or two games maybe once or twice a month. We also tried roller skating. Also fun but costs, although not a lot.

That's about all the things I can think of that are cheap or free without knowing what specific city (or type of place) you live in.