What I Do When I’m Not Working

Flatirons over Boulder, Colorado

Remember blog memes? Seems like it’s been awhile since one was going around. Yuri tagged me in the latest one, which was started by Shimon Sandler, and began as “what I like to do when I’m NOT doing SEO.” Since seo is only part of what I do I thought I’d generalize the title a little and tell you what I do when I’m not working.

The Rules

How about a quick review of the rules of the game

  1. Tell who tagged you, and link to them
  2. Tag 3 other bloggers

Pretty simple right? Now that we know how to play here’s what I’m doing when not working. I have to admit I’m a rather boring person and working does dominate my time.

Baseball the King of all Sports

I’m a sports fanatic. I can watch ESPN 24 hours a day. Baseball being my favorite sport with football (the American variety) not far behind, but I can be happy watching most anything sports related.

Early spring is one of my favorite times of year. Aside from the fact that the weather is getting warmer and my birthday happens to fall at that time, it’s the start the baseball season. I’m what you’d call a seamhead, which is a person who can spend hours on end watching and talking baseball and looking over player and team stats.

I love baseball enough to have named my weekly (and now monthly) roundup post after a Saturday morning baseball roundup show. One of these days I’ll probably develop a site around baseball and retire from everything else.

Coor's Field

Starting in mid March I play softball and will continue to play right up through Halloween. I’ve been playing 3rd base with the same team for a few years now and think next year I’ll be joining a second one for the summer and fall. The choice to play 3rd came from watching my favorite player, Graig Nettles making diving stops at the position, when I was a kid.

Living In the Mountains

I also enjoy biking and hiking and live in one of the better areas to do both. The image at the top of this post is from Chautauqua Park here in Boulder. The mountains are called the Flatirons and are at the edge of the Rocky Mountains. I live about 5 minutes north of Chautauqua.

Sometimes critters from the mountains wander down into town, like this deer who kept me from doing my laundry one morning. I eventually had to walk around him or her. Deer in my backyard is a common occurrence year round.

A Deer in My Backyard

There’s quite a lot to see just walking or biking around town. Boulder has foot paths and bike paths everywhere and at some times of day either is as quick to get across town as your car.

Learning, Learning, and more Learning

I love to learn new things, so much of my time is spent reading. Whether it’s a website, a book, a magazine, or a cereal box I’ll read most anything. That cereal box line once landed me a job when I used it as the opening in a cover letter by the way.

For the last few years most of my reading has revolved around work. Mainly design, programming, and marketing books and magazines, and most of my online reading tends to be about the same.

When I can, I still take on the occasional novel. I stopped reading popular fiction a number of years ago, but work my way through some of the literary masters. Reading great writers is one of the better ways to improve your own writing voice.

Family and Friends

Like many people I enjoy spending time with family and friends. I don’t get to see my family much, since I live about 2,000 miles away. They’re all in New York and I’m here in Colorado surrounded by the beautiful mountains.

I visit New York every Thanksgiving and occasionally at other times of the year. My immediate family usually comes out west to visit me during the spring and summer so we do see each other. The rest of the year we’re in close contact over the phone.

Friends and I do the usual things. Plenty of time doing nothing more than hanging out, but they’re also there while I’m doing some of the activities above and below. I’m a regular at garage sales with one friend. She and I enjoy looking around to see what other people consider their junk. I never buy much. If I spend $5 it’s a lot, but I’ve found a few cool odds and ends and have begun a collection of games that I’ll probably never play.

A Picture is Worth 1,000 Words

Photography has become something of a hobby over the years. I’m far from a great photographer. If you want to see good pictures then check out some of Forrest’s images. I have a semi-manual digital camera that serves my needs and still calls to me to learn what all those manual settings actually do.

My photographic skills are lacking, but I do enjoy snapping images. I think I’ve gotten better at composing an image over the years and have managed to take some pretty good shots. One of these days I’ll spend the time going through all of them and post the ones I like to Flickr or just use them here more to aid in post design. Looking through them all seems a little daunting at the moment.

Whenever I think there’s going to be a photo opp I carry my camera with me. I typically end up with a lot of images of nature or buildings as I travel between mountains and city. Taking pictures of buildings comes from an interest in architecture and I often try to capture architectural details like the one of St. Patrick’s Cathedral below.

Detail of St. Patrick's Cathedral

Who’s Next?

That’s a little about me. I’m sure I’ve left plenty out, but the above are some of the ways I spend my time when I’m not sitting here behind the computer working on this or that.

All that’s left in the meme is for me to tag three of my fellow bloggers. To make the decision easy for me and reward some of you for commenting I’m picking the last three people who commented here. I know you’re not all SEOs, so feel free to expand the idea to what you do when you’re not working like I did.

And if you’re not one of the three people above, but would still like to play go ahead and write a post telling your readers what you do in your free time. Now that you know more about me, tell me more about you.

Download a free sample from my book, Design Fundamentals.


  1. Love the picture of St. Patrick’s Cathedral. Of course I’m a sucker for big, elaborate churches, which is odd because I don’t go to church for religious purposes. I just like the architecture.

    I’m not sure I understand this concept of not working, but I will try to get on board. I’ll tackle the meme on Monday.

  2. Thanks Kristine. I have a few more pictures of it, but I chose to go with the detail here. Same here about liking churches and same too about it not being for religious reasons. Way back in high school (in the stone age) I thought of becoming an architect. One of my good friends did and we used to go out taking pictures of buildings, particularly one church in town.

    I know what you mean about not getting the concept of not working. I set out to make today a relaxing half work day after a veyr busy week and here it is almost 1:30 in the morning and I’m finally responding to your comment.

    Fitting end to the week.

  3. I recognize the mountains in that first image…! The Flatirons are pretty spectacular. Actually it’s almost beyond belief that they could look so desert-like and stand not all that many miles away from 30 vertical feet of snow in the high Rockies. I miss Colorado…

    You might want to consider selling some of your architectural work for stock? The demand for particular architecture isn’t terribly high volume, but it’s there and growing. Especially with the proliferation of eZine sites. I enjoyed your Saint Patrick’s photo, and with your marketing skill, I wouldn’t be surprised at all if I saw it framed in SeaTac – Seattle / Tacoma – Int’l Airport one day.

    Now I need to give some thought to how I’m going to approach this meme… I try to blur the line between working and not working. At least outside the 9-5; I keep telling myself that’s temporary. Reading The Tipping Point and the 30 or so books about evolution on my shelf doesn’t really fit under the ‘work’ category per se, but I also prefer doing things with more hedonic value, and part of the reason I crack half the books I’ve been reading lately is because I know the information inside will ultimately help me. Of course, part is just curiosity…

    So: how to put that coherently?

  4. I should have realized you recognize the mountains. The Flatirons are pretty spectacular. It’s easy to understand why someone first arrived at this place and though it would a good place to stop and settle. I don’t blame you for missing Colorado. It will be hard for me to leave if I ever do. By the way you also live in a pretty beautiful part of the country yourself.

    I know you grew up, but how long?

    I’ve thought of selling the images and I’ve also thought of using all my images as the start of my own stock photography site or section of this site. I’ve thought of lots of things to do with them. It’s on my to do list to go through everything I have and separate the wheat from the chaff.

    I know what you mean about blurring the line. Keeping with the images I first starting taking pictures for source material I could use in designs and some of my images have found their way into client sites.

    I think it’s probably safe to talk about anything you aren’t directly doing for work, though you could also mention how your work life and your out of work life are connected.

  5. I did my post, which only served to point out how many of pursuits are solitary, and how much work has taken over my life. It might have been a good thing though, because now I might be motivated to get back to doing some of the things I’ve let lapse.

  6. Funny. I kind of noticed that most of my pursuits were solitary too. I had to carefully select a few I do with other people. Work has pretty much taken over my life too, though I do enjoy it so I’m not complaining.

    I forgot to mention I enjoy a good crossword or logic puzzle too. I don’t start them all that much, because I have a hard time stopping until I finish. Often that’s more time than I wanted to spend in the first place. But then there are those times when one just finds its way in front of me and I can be lost for a few hours.

  7. I just found this site through a link from one of Kristine’s blogs. Looks like the meme tag found it’s way to me, and I wanted to follow it back a bit. Great site and great writing!

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