Hobbies

I try to stay busy with a number of hobbies.  I intend to live forever!

bicyclist

Bicycles I love to ride.  I used to ride a lot more, however, as it seems that I used to have much more time!  I am riding an old bike, a 1996 Giant Boulder.  I also maintain a website on Illinois bicycle trails called BikeIllinois .

motorcyclist

Motorcycle I have a motorcycle license, but currently don’t have a place for a motorcycle.  That means I don’t own one and only dream of the day I’ll be able to drive away on two wheels.

postcrossing

Postcrossing Logo I am a member of Postcrossing , a site which allows the exchange of postcards with people all over the world.  I use my Mailer’s Postmark Permit to hand-cancel these cards.

beer advocate

Beer Advocate Logo Being half German, it should be obvious that I am a connoisseur of beer.  I am also a  charter subscriber of Beer Advocate , the leading beer magazine here in the United States

amateur radio operator

Amateur Radio Saves Lives This year, I became a General Class Amateur Radio operator.  In addition to having a license to use the ham frequencies, I am also a volunteer examiner and Skywarn Storm Spotter .

I hope to become more active in this hobby as the year goes on and am looking to earn my extra class, the highest class of license, sometime in the next year.

fountain pen enthusiast

Fountain Pen Network Before the invention of ballpoint pens and bad handwriting, there was fountain pens.  I am an avid collector and user of fountain pens – using brands such as Lamy , Pelikan , and Pilot .  Part of the hobby is learning about how writing was done in days gone by and I visit a special forum, the Fountain Pen Network , to learn more.

writer

Fountain Pen Writing Using fountain pens isn’t that fun without something to write.  I am an avid writer and advocate of writing letters.

web designer

Since my first website in 1996, I have spent many hours developing websites in HTML (like this), using CMS (such as Drupal), or blog software (such as WordPress).

computer expert

I am fluent in a lot of things related to computers:  Microsoft Windows (consumer and server), Linux, Unix, Microsoft Office, Microsoft Expression, Adobe Dreamweaver, Adobe Acrobat, HTML, PHP, networking, voip, among others.