A Brush with Somebodys 15 Minutes…

I suppose all I can really say is that I know this guy.

This is Mark.  Our wives are pals, which means I occasionally see him at a child’s birthday party or when he is really stuck for somebody to help him with a computer issue.

He just won the Vicks NyQuil Most Dedicated Fan contest.

Mark's Moment of Glory

Mark is a very dedicated San Francisco 49ers fan.  He has season tickets.  He travels to an away games now and again.  He even went to the exhibition game the team played in the UK a couple years back.

He is really, really into football.  Read his contest page.

And he is my go-to guy when I need to demonstrate that my online gaming and blogging hobby is, if not normal, at least relatively inexpensive.  Season tickets to the 49ers cost more than I spent on games and computer hardware in the last five years.

And I almost never paint my body the colors of any in-game faction and the extent of my gaming apparel is limited to a Meridian 59 T-shirt and that Warp Drive Active polo shirt I won ages ago, which I almost never wear because the comic on the front gets a disturbing 3D effect when laid over my somewhat expanded middle-age waistline.

But today is Mark’s day.  All that dedication and painting his body red has paid off.

He won the Most Dedicated Fan contest, which means he gets an all expenses paid trip to the Superbowl, a loaded VISA gift card with which to do some shopping, and a bunch of other swag I am sure.

And the 49ers even have a shot at being in the game.  How lucky can you get?

How can my hobby even begin to match that?

The closest I can come up with is getting elected to the EVE Council of Stellar Management for a free trip to Iceland.

I hear Reykjavík is nicer than Indianapolis… at least during the months where there is daylight.

15 thoughts on “A Brush with Somebodys 15 Minutes…

  1. p0tsh0t

    I have it on direct authority that Reykjavik is nicer than Indianapolis even when there is no daylight.

    What’s the metal content of that Stellar Emperor trophy anyway? That’s gotta be worth something…


  2. Darraxus

    I am also a huge sports fanatic and Niners fan, but I could never afford season tickets and the like.

    Games and sports are my two hobbies. I often watch sports while playing games, but would also never paint myself up.

    I have plenty of sports clothing but zero video game clothing.

    I dont know what the point of this story is, but I just felt like replying.

    GO NINERS!!!


  3. HarbingerZero

    You said it buddy. I don’t think my wife ever understood it until my next door neighbor bought a boat. And then when the neighbor’s wife and my wife starting comparing notes, my wife acquired a new appreciation for the cheapness of my hobby. And those late night’s gaming seemed a far better alternative to the entire weekends lost to the boat. Not that she doesn’t gripe anymore, but the grip has lost its bite…


  4. saucelah

    I believe Vegas has set the odds of the Niners winning it all at about 4%

    I am a sports fan, “wicked” into my Boston teams, but I have trouble looking at that as a hobby. I do know somebody that calls football her religion, however, so I guess some look at it that way.

    My hobbies were all martial arts related though, so I expect something tangible — though I’m not entirely sure what I mean by that. I haven’t been able to afford tuition for any type of training for a few years, but I can still train. I’m not locked out of my brain’s server for lack of cash. I can easily teach beginners in the style I have the most training in, and nothing can take that away from me.

    I suppose I don’t really look at gaming as a hobby either. I mean, I do spend a lot of time gaming, but I also spend a lot of time watching movies. I’ve never heard anyone say, “my hobbies include movie-watching,” though maybe there are some that would — I suppose I don’t really know. I just look at gaming as my preferred distraction, serving the role TV serves for most people.

    Don’t get me wrong, I don’t want to sound like I’m judging you or Mr. Mark for calling things hobbies that I don’t look at as hobbies, just pondering why I do not think of them as hobbies and why.


  5. Wilhelm Arcturus Post author

    @saucelah – I don’t think I ever said anything about Mark calling what he does a hobby. I just said it made my hobby look a bit more sane.

    But you do seem to be very narrowly focused on what you consider a hobby. I like the Wikipedia entry:

    “A hobby is a regular activity or interest that is undertaken for pleasure, typically done during one’s leisure time.”

    Pretty much anything you consider to be your hobby is.


  6. SynCaine

    Anyone who is into anything that is not making the maximum amount of money is an idiot.

    So I’ve read.

    Niners losing to the Pats would be a good SuperBowl, now that the Pats beating the undefeated Packers is no longer an option.


  7. saucelah

    I’d have to agree that whatever a person calls their hobby is their hobby, but I don’t think that means that everyone else then has to accept that such is a hobby. I mean, under that definition, watching Law & Order is a hobby, and I find that hard to accept.

    I suppose I do distinguish between just plain leisure activities and hobbies. I’m the last person to consider money to be the only acceptable motivator, but I do expect my hobbies to expand my knowledge and skills.


  8. Wilhelm Arcturus Post author

    I am not sure what there is from everybody else that they are required to accept. There is no status to something being a hobby. That video games is a hobby of mine does not in anyway diminish somebody whose hobby is building scale model trains. If somebody comes along and tells me that what I am doing isn’t “really” a hobby, my response would likely be “up yours, you elitist jerk.”

    I would say that there is a certain level of devotion to something before somebody calls it a hobby, but that threshold is probably different for each individual.

    Just watching “Law & Order” perhaps isn’t a hobby.

    But what if somebody is really into the show, has opinions about episodes and which were the good seasons, theories about the standard dynamics of the opening scene and how it is determined which character gets the humorous quip, loves when the arraignment judge is the sarcastic balding guy with glasses but not the grumpy woman, and so on? And what if they discuss all of this on a forum or a blog?

    I knew somebody whose hobby was, boiled down to the basics, reading and discussing the works of Jane Austen. I would not recommend telling her that isn’t really a hobby.


  9. saucelah

    Fair enough. I revise my view. Gaming is not a hobby for me, despite that it’s a large part of my life, but that might be because since I was eight up until about three years ago (with a small break for a teenage/early 20s wasteland), martial arts trumped gaming. So it’s just a personal bias.

    On the Jane Austen thing, that used to be a large part of my career. I wouldn’t tell her it’s not a hobby, but I might ask her why she needs to punish herself like that.


  10. p0tsh0t

    I always thought of a hobby as:

    1. Being active, rather than passive
    2. Having some peristency to it (involvement over time) and
    3. Perhaps some progression aspect to it (you get better, more knowledgeable, etc.)

    Merely watching a show or sport or sports team would likely make you a fan, but not necessarily turn that activity into a hobby.

    At some point, however, once you start buying episodes, collecting collectibles, running a blog, etc., I think you’re migrating to hobbydom.

    By that definition, just playing games would not necessarily be a hobby, but I suspect that most of us reading these blogs probably are probably a bit beyond that low bar and into hobby land.

    By the wikipedia definition, sleeping is my hobby.

    For extra points, if you substitute Emily Bronte for Jane Austen, would that change your answer? How about Mary Faulkner?


  11. Wilhelm Arcturus Post author

    @Potshot – Napping could be a hobby. It is certainly something I enjoy.

    Sleeping is a mere biological necessity I am forced to do every night.

    Hrmm… Emily… or even all the Bronte sisters together… would still be a hobby I think.

    Kathleen Lindsay… or Barbara Cartland… that way lies madness.

    I always think of this comic when hobbies and interests come up.


  12. Wilhelm Arcturus Post author

    Heh! I had that comic in mind already, since earlier in the day Jeff Green tweeted a list of the Worst Beer in the World. Poor Olde English 800.

    Of course, the Best Beer lists on the site are all obscure stuff that I’ve never heard of because… well… you’ve already read the comic.


  13. saucelah

    I used to be really into obscure beer, and I don’t recognize any of those. Of course, I’m out of practice — I’ve since been diagnosed with celiac.

    NO BEER FOR ME! :(


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