New Activities/Interests during 'lockdown'

Discussion in 'The Observation Bar' started by Ticklishchap, Feb 17, 2021.

  1. Ticklishchap

    Ticklishchap One Too Many

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    Location:
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    During the various lockdowns and Covid restrictions over the past year, what new interests/hobbies/challenges have you taken up? I have been learning (or trying to learn) Malay in my spare moments. It is the first time I have attempted a non-European language and I am finding the vocabulary far more of a challenge than the grammar, which is fairly straightforward excerpt for the very different word order. I'm probably not going to 'use's very much except in Malaysian or Indonesian restaurants (Indonesian is virtually the same).

    I also find I'm watching and reading about a lot more sport than I have since my high school and college days.

    Anyone else have new interests or shifting priorities to share?
     
  2. Sonero

    Sonero Practically Family

    Messages:
    750
    Location:
    San Diego / Tijuana
    Been infatuated with Self Haircuts. THEONEMINUTEBARBER on Youtube has been an incredible source of information for me and many other people. I highly recommend supporting his channel.

    I have also read book after book after book. I have a lot to discuss when and if I ever get to be social again. :)

    Haven't gained any weight still exercising and eating right.
    The downside is I live amongst some of the most wretched people on this planet > AMERICANS who couldn't give a shit about anyone else but themselves. I miss my time in Mexico where I kept a little flat pre covid.

    I suspect by this summer there will be more social unrest and people will purge whatever they need to purge at whatever cost it takes.

    Otherwise very thankful for what I do have and the few cyber communities that I enjoy like FL.

    Keep the faith.
     
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  3. Ticklishchap

    Ticklishchap One Too Many

    Messages:
    1,442
    Location:
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    Thank you very much for those insights. I, by contrast, am looking forward to my first post-lockdown haircut as I really like my local men’s barbers and I think of getting a haircut as a kind of social occasion.

    Like you I’ve read a lot during lockdown. Working from home is not unfamiliar to me but I miss site visits and look forward to being able to have face-to-face meetings again.

    You are not alone in the US when it comes to people who put themselves first; like many of my fellow countrymen I just try to screen it all out.

    My new project has been the language learning. I haven’t figured out why I have suddenly wanted to watch and read about a lot more sports than usual: mid-life crisis, perhaps. ...
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 20, 2021
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  4. Harp

    Harp I'll Lock Up

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    I've already had Covid,
    and eventually will go to a VA hospital for the vaccine injection. In the meanwhile I mourn my baseball
    team and read.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 20, 2021
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  5. LizzieMaine

    LizzieMaine Bartender

    Not really a new hobby, but I've gone back into radio production in a big way, with the comedy-variety show we're doing in cooperation with the local radio station. I've gotten out a lot of my old gear again for the first time in years, and am actively rebuilding the old sound-effects kit I used to have.

    cvshow.jpg

    The two mics are an RCA 77B1 ("retired" from NBC under circumstances probably best not dwelt upon) and an RCA 50A that I use to pick up recorded sound effects from the turntable at left. I also have an RCA 44BX which we used when we were doing the show live on stage, but it's not called for in this setup.

    I've added a few tools since this shot was taken last spring, including a compressor-limiter, a telephone-filter equalizer (for doing phone-call-effect dialogue), and a better and quieter microphone pre-amp. The only question is where I'm going to put all this stuff once the pandemic is over and we're a theatre again. I'm set up now in the wheelchair section, and will have to strike the setup once we reopen.
     
  6. TMP

    TMP Familiar Face

    Messages:
    60
    That's a serious collection of ribbon mics! I don't suppose your radio station does streaming?
     
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  7. LizzieMaine

    LizzieMaine Bartender

    All the broadcasts are archived here on the theatre website --

    https://www.rocklandstrand.com/podcasts

    They go up as podcasts usually a day or two after they go out over the radio station --

    https://www.wrfr.org

    ..which also has a live stream. Next show on the air Sunday February 28th at 5pm EST.

    The first three shows were broadcast live before a theatre audience, but since then we've had to "socially distance it." I can do more interesting special effects that way, but I still miss doing it live.
     
  8. STEVIEBOY1

    STEVIEBOY1 Practically Family

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    Location:
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    I Think that Bahasa Malay and Indonesian, which are almost the same were bought in to standardise the many various tribal languages in both countries. An interesting subject. Good luck with it. I am having a dalliance with Latin from an old school teacher which I am finding interesting too.
     
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  9. Edward

    Edward Bartender

    Messages:
    21,781
    Location:
    London, UK
    I've not done much new - indeed, I've not had the time to do much of anything outside of work. With the now wife beingon the vulnerable list and having needed (non-ugent) surgery during the last year, we've largely been on self-imposed lockdown since this time last year. My teaching went online a week or two before the March 2020 lockdown was finally officially launched, and we never really came out of it. I can't honestly say I've noticed much difference whether in or out of lockdown since last July (the only sign we're on lockdown round here in either number 2 or 3 was the local pubs being shut), as we've never really come out of it. I'm at the point now where I'm reluctant to go back - I do very much hope I am given the jab before I'm expected back in the office full time in September (third wave, as yet to come, permitting).

    I did have some plans for long term lockdown - I'd hope to pick up my guitar skills a bit more, spend more time on it, and I had started a little work with an app on my Irish language skills (predominantly non-existent as things sit bar a few words/ phrases). I'd also hoped to improve my Latin and Mandarin, and read a bit more. In the end, none of it has happened. Working almost entirely online (with occasional trips into the office for small classes - mandated by the university for fear our students object to having paid to come to London only to have all their classes online, but of limited value when they can't be put into discussion groups or do very much as they have to socially distance, and because it's only part of the class in the physical sessions, they can't be lectures.... gah....). Onlnie teaching can be a lot of fun (we've been doing it as a separate course since 2003), but it is undeniably a lot more work than just turning up in the classroom atthe right tiem and delivering. In April / May, I'm gonig to have twice-weekly classes with my students in Beijing that start a 7.45am UK time...

    The upshot of it all is that I don't particularly feel I've experienced lockdown at all, as I've spent much more time with work than normal, and so had very little time for hobbies or anything outside of it. I could easily work seven days a week, but I've had to resist that given it' counter-productive in the long run.

    On the plus side, I may have little life outside of work, but much of it is more productive than normal as there is definitely less appetite for endless, long meetings of the corporate style which the organisation feels should happen but are largely pointless. Such meetings as do happen are usually much quicker.... I'm hoping that in the long run this puts a dent in the culture of endless meetings for meetings' sake. (What a shame it won't kill off the annual appraisal culture as well!)

    I've taken up aerobics in the hope of shifting the excess weight I can't get out to walk off at present. It's 20 minutes a day and it's only week one, but I hate it with a passion. I'm trying to power through it til I shift the weight as that's my only option at present, but as soon as a more pleasant outside alternative (not jogging, a pox on jogging) comes up, I'll be done with it. I'm hoping to reduce what I eat significantly; I take great pleasure in food, but as things are, I'd honestly rather get some hypnotherapy to reduce food in my mind to pure fuel and no pleasure than keep up with the exercise regime forever.
     
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  10. Harp

    Harp I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    6,715
    Location:
    Chicago, IL US
    Student dissatisfaction with on line lectures absent direct classroom contact with faculty is seldom
    heard these days of more collective complaint. The common perception this side of the pond is that
    Vid has transformed prior trends for newer more adaptable practice.

    My experience with immigrant Chinese here claim English can be learned in twelve to sixteen months.
    Hakka, Punti, Mandarin tongue tied not with English and I am always amazed by their scholastic drive.
     
  11. Edward

    Edward Bartender

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    Location:
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    Back in September the press tried to make a tihng of new students claiming they were being denied a "proper university experience" and wanting fees reduced (not a popular idea with the universities, who are currently spending more than normal, both financially and in man-hours, with markedly reduced research as a result, to ensure teqching gets done). It seems to have broadly died out, though, either as students have gotten used to the internet delivery, or perhaps just realised that the university owes them teaching, not a social life...

    They're an industrious people, as a culture, the Chinese. English is not only a whole new written approach to them (beyond an alphabet; Mandarin has a character for a whole word, totally different written language structure), but there's the twin evils of pronunciation (notoriously the trickiest bit), and grammar. Grammar is alien in Mandarin - there's none of this learning verb endings as in French, or sixteen words for 'the', case dependent, as in German. If you want to say "I'm gonig to the shops", it's literally the equivalent of "I go the shops", "We go the shops". Future tense? "We go the shops tomorrow" Past Tense "I go the shops yesterday". Question? Add 'ma' at the end - "We go the shops tomorrow ma"... A coleague once compared the grammatical structure to lego, which makes sense. The computer engineers I work with on that project pick it up really well, as it works like flow-chart / programming logic. The speed with which the native speakers talk is the tricky bit; exchanging a few pleasantries with a local is one thing, but keeping up with a group of them in conversation is not something to which I aspire... I'll be pleased if I can get to a point where I can order fully in a restaurant. As of now, I'm at "hello, how are you, I'll have one of those and one of those and one of those, thank-you". It's shaming when you walk into a fast food place in a non-tourist area andat least one or two of the staff are always fluent in English, but there is a pride in their own culture which also greatly appreciates outsaiders making an effrot with even basic pleasantries.
     
  12. Harp

    Harp I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
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    Location:
    Chicago, IL US
    Very interesting post. Radio is far more resilient and informative.

    ...And, raised index finger deliberate technique quite reminiscent of William F Buckley, definitely.
     
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  13. LizzieMaine

    LizzieMaine Bartender

    Taking the lobby photos for these shows is almost as much fun as the shows themselves...

    lizmicBW1009.jpg

    Good Riddance 2020.jpg
    Xmas Carol.jpg
    internethorror2.jpg
    And a candid shot from a rehearsal for the last live show we did back in 2019 -- 78978280_10220226611045212_6546777516391006208_o.jpg
    I'm throwing a cue for a sound effect and am annoyed that it's late. "Let's get with it you guys, we don't have time to screw around." When we do a show live, we have a cast rehearsal at 9 am, a band rehearsal at noon, a full dress rehearsal at 2, and we hit the air live at 5. It's a very very long day.
     
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  14. Harp

    Harp I'll Lock Up

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    6,715
    Location:
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    Yes, no mistake, demonstrative directorial Buckley sound stage technique at play here.
    And, the book being read in pix is obviously God and Man At Yale.
     
  15. belfastboy

    belfastboy I'll Lock Up

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    Location:
    vancouver, canada
    I took Latin for 6 years in school....anything to get away from French....the other language choice.
     
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  16. LizzieMaine

    LizzieMaine Bartender

    In fact, it's an 1853 edition of "Poems By Robert Burns," fa faire and sonsie face, grae cheftain o' the puddin' race, which was the closest thing I had at hand that was contemporaneous with Brother Dickens.
     
  17. Harp

    Harp I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    6,715
    Location:
    Chicago, IL US
    Latin and French and German. Picked up a few French and German newspapers at an airport concession
    to read on the plane, found myself struggling. Have decided to have another go with all, starting with
    Latin. Bought Foster's text, several others including Wheelock scattered about. Of course I have more
    appreciation than in school, less discipline, and hectic work. Already making excuses....
     
  18. Harp

    Harp I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    6,715
    Location:
    Chicago, IL US
    Keep that book safe and secure. I should give my grandmother's haggis recipe a try. Someday.
     
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2021
  19. STEVIEBOY1

    STEVIEBOY1 Practically Family

    Messages:
    929
    Location:
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    When I was at secondary school, we only had the choice of French, French or French. So I did French, it was ok in the first 2 years, but in the 3rd year, the teacher, although nice enough, just didn't seem to get through to us and it was when we had to start learning about all the different tenses so when I arrived in the forth and fifth forms, I was a bit behind and it was never really the same after that. We also then had another French Master who I found difficult to get on with.
     

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