2000 hours

edited June 2012 in Story Games
Imagine you're going to be stuck in a moving vehicle for 2 hours a day, 5 days a week, for 4 years. About 2000 hours. You have a culture-transforming phone and a superpad. The surroundings are cramped but you can sit down. (This is my fate)

What do you do?

So far I have earmarked 60 hours for the Wire, 20 for Game of Thrones, 10 for Band of Brothers. That leaves just 1910 hours left to be accounted for.


  • Add Breaking Bad and Arrested Development to the list.
  • Make sure superpad is the one that can do wifi and mobile. Costlier, but worth it for 2000 hours. Get a keyboard for that thing so you can really jot ideas down.

    Get a dropbox account, on it put All The PDFs.

    Start a blog or a regular G+ update of "What should I watch now?"

    Take a few hours to sort out your life goals. If you wanted to write the Great American Novel or become an artist (there's good art apps for pads), but instead watch 200 hours of serialized TV, you will have a whopper of a midlife crisis.

  • Yeah, you sound sort of sad but what an amazing opportunity to make things.
  • Radiolab, The Spark Podcast and Ideas from the CBC, and EscapePod, PodCastle, Pseudopod short story podcasts.
  • The superpad is wifi, and it can tether to the culture transforming phone.

    I do think some time on the fractured epic novel is in order. But I also don't want to make myself miserable whipping myself for not being the Ubermensch, especially early on. The sad is because I'll only be seeing my favorite people on weekends.
  • Do NOT get the wifi version (too late), unless you want to spend all 2000 hours on entertainment (or are considerably more disciplined than myself). Write, design, draw, etc.
  • Maybe don't make specific decisions now and instead, slot general days for activities of a single type? Like, Monday could be TV day, Tuesday could be blogging day...
  • I've been in a similar situation for the last 5 months. An hour each way on the Blue Line from Long Beach to Downtown LA. I've read (and/or listened to) about 15 books. Mostly fantasy/scifi entertainment, but I mixed in some more substance, including Reality is Broken and Leaving Mundania and some work related stuff.

    The upside of listening to books is that I can also do it at work during some of my less mind-absorbing tasks.

    Having gone through that, the time I spent going through books felt like more was accomplished than the time I spent watching BSG episodes.

    I listened to the whole Lord of the Rings series. I found it kind of painful but finished anyway. I felt like I needed to earn that geek accomplishment.

    I also did a lot of creative work for a larp I ran last weekend at WyrdCon. Wrtiting out ideas and plans on a paper notepad, from which I'd type them up later (which leads to a revision pass that I find helpful for my creative writing).

    And I learned how to knit. Knitting is pretty portable and works well on a train for the days when it's not packed sardine tight. Made a scarf and some wrist warmers. Met a guy one day afterward on the train who spun his own wool yarn, which was pretty awesome.

    I think the most important this is to have multiple things you're interested in doing and not have a schedule. Mix it up. Do what feels good that particular day. And have backup plans for the sardine days that come when the trains have problems.

    One of those backup plans should be to come up with a few playlists of music you can just relax and listed to for the days when you're too tired to engage effectively with something more visual.
  • I spend a lot of my listening hours working down the backlist of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind podcast on x2 speed. There's a lot of cool story ideas in there. I'm almost caught up!
  • edited June 2012
    Don't just consume. Create!

    If I had this problem, I'd learn to make electronic music. 2000 hours is 1/5 of the way to mastery!
    I do think some time on the fractured epic novel is in order. But I also don't want to make myself miserable whipping myself for not being the Ubermensch, especially early on. The sad is because I'll only be seeing my favorite people on weekends.
    And I wouldn't feel bad if I wasn't electro-Beethoven by the end of it. Learning that I could do creative stuff outside of the pressure to become hugely accomplished and respected was a big leap forward for me and made life suck a bunch less.

    That said, the four-year timeframe makes me think you're talking about a college or university thing. In that case, in your shoes I'd probably wind up doing homework / studying on the bus. College left me absolutely no brain for creating things.

  • Talk to the people stuck in the moving vehicle with you?

  • Talk to the people stuck in the moving vehicle with you?
    8-o Dear sir, this is simply not done!

  • edited June 2012
    Every day, do half an hour of journaling and free-writing in a Mead composition notebook. Then draw a daily comic (no artistic talent or witticism required; just create). Spend time with your eyes closed, imagining you are various things (your neighbour, a sexy teenager, a tiger, an old man living in the future). Pick a topic and write daily poetry about it (possibilities: intergalactic life, work, sex). Learn to nap in transit (super valuable). Get some mobile zine-crafting supplies (a sealable folder, glue sticks, tape, scissors, magazine scraps) and make silly zines. Leave them laying around in public when you arrive at your destination. Read. Savour coffee from a travel mug. Practice meditation. Take small doses of LSD. Massage your neck and shoulders. Crochet. Knit.

    Bonus: none of these things require the phone or the superpad, so you can leave them at home or in your bag.
  • I've been there, done that, and it was an invaluable opportunity to read books. Or graphic novels! Carrying manga series around may get weighty, but that's really the way to cheer yourself up in the morning and relax in the evening.
  • I find typing on my lap not super easy and one hour not super long. Like, I'll reply to emails and catch-up on academic blogs / tweets in an hour. My one-way hour commute is spent listening to audiobooks or watching people and ruminating on sociology / personal stuff. Alternatively, reading SF&F.

    An hour is about the time it takes me to get warmed up for SERIOUS BUSINESS like studying texts, writing, reviewing my field-notes, research, music making, whatever. I prefer to do that stuff in 4-10 hour stretches.

    It is, for me anyways, an excellent amount of time to spend either journalling or mediating. Also all of Joe's ideas. They are the best.
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