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How do you tell others about your passion for aquatics?


Tedrock
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How do you tell others about your passion for aquatics?  I don’t like calling it a hobby it seems more than that to me. No but really,  how does the subject come up?  Do they just see all the fish themed merch that adorns you or work space and the side ways glance appears.  

Now mind you I really don’t care what people think, I am me I am happy.  Fish, shrimp, snails, underwater gardening give me peace.  I just dislike that awkward moment when you must explain what the “hobby” is to you with the least words possible which is different in every situation.  Just looking for some different perspectives.

 

many thanks

Tedrock

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Wait for a small gap in the conversation and then bust into a 20 minute filibuster about all my new projects, 😎.

Seriously tho it can  be awkward when people first find out I have so many tanks. I explain “ you have a Harley, boat, 4 wheelers, whatever the hobby may be, I also have a hobby I’m passionate about its aquariums.”

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On 9/9/2021 at 9:29 PM, Atitagain said:

Wait for a small gap in the conversation and then bust into a 20 minute filibuster about all my new projects, 😎.

Seriously tho it can  be awkward when people first find out I have so many tanks. I explain “ you have a Harley, boat, 4 wheelers, whatever the hobby may be, I also have a hobby I’m passionate about its aquariums.”

You are so right remember their collection as you mention the number of tanks you have. Great point.  We all remember beanie babies!

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On 9/9/2021 at 8:14 PM, Tedrock said:

How do you tell others about your passion for aquatics?  I don’t like calling it a hobby it seems more than that to me. No but really,  how does the subject come up?  Do they just see all the fish themed merch that adorns you or work space and the side ways glance appears.  

Now mind you I really don’t care what people think, I am me I am happy.  Fish, shrimp, snails, underwater gardening give me peace.  I just dislike that awkward moment when you must explain what the “hobby” is to you with the least words possible which is different in every situation.  Just looking for some different perspectives.

 

many thanks

Tedrock

280A5072-2533-433B-B28F-EF292DBDD47F.png

There’s really no need to go in depth unless they ask and are truly interested.  If it comes up, I just explain I love keeping fish, dabble in shrimp, etc.  If they ask to see pics, I whip out the phone and show them.  If they keep asking, I can talk their ear off.  I just watch for their eyes to drift away or start to glaze over.  I figure when they stop asking questions, it’s time to stop talking.  I also tell them they don’t have to listen if they’re bored, and make a joke out of it.  I have the advantage of working in the animal field, so many of my coworkers either have, or have had, tanks at some time or another.  It’s rare that I get to chat in depth at work, there’s almost always something or someone waiting on me.

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I had one office mate that I didn't know well at first, we both kept to ourselves since we worked in two separate groups and more often than not if we were only in our offices for part of the day and running around getting stuff done or in meetings. It wasn't like we were inept, we chatted here and there, but never really clicked on a lot that we could relate on. I used to replay some live streams of various fishtubers in the background while I was getting stuff done, but this one day I had a live stream going. Paused it, pulled out my ear buds to go grab something from someone in another office, stood up and got confused. I swore I had muted the stream. Went to check my headphones no noise, and my coworker was asking what was going on because I was listening to my computer closely like a moron thinking that the stream was still playing. I told him what was going on and oddly enough he had the same stream going. He forgot his headphones at home that day and had it playing quietly, let's just say that we've been great friends ever since. 

In general this hobby is something I'm passionate about, but something a lot of people outside it don't get. Once I get into the weeds people kind of glaze over and it's conditioned me to not really bringing it up. Him and I talked about it and he said the same thing. Since we lived in different states and work was in between both of us, we ended up setting up a QT/holding tank in the office. People would come in all the time and be confused why there was an empty tank/bare tank with fish or shrimp in it. While we shared an office for two years we'd trade fry back and fourth from our personal projects. It was actually kind of neat. Few people caught on and got interested and joined us in our madness. Between him and I, we probably brought over a dozen of coworkers into the hobby and nano tanks in the office became a norm. Didn't help there was a LFS down the street from our office location so groups of us would take a trip during lunch and take a look to see what was going on. 

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If people ask about what I’m looking at on my phone I show them pics of the tanks or fish I’m looking at on the forum. When people talk about pets I show them pics of my fish and tanks. It led to a 50 g Rubbermaid feeding trough and I’ve got orders for ricefish when I get a big group for some folks at work with smaller ponds. One of the docs I work with has a pond and he roped me into a conversation with another doc about what was happening in his ponds and I helped them work through some issues. It enriched my relationship with several coworker. 

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 I only really talk about it if I show them my tanks.   Otherwise it doesn't really come up too much.   I don't have high expectations for understanding.  My sister called my Amazon Swords weeds, ouch but I do joke around with my family anytime they complain about their dogs chewing things up or pooping somewhere they aren't supposed to I always say "Funny, my fish are so well behaved they never leave their tanks."     

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I have so many different 'off-kilter' hobbies that I have a hard time talking about them in any great detail to... anyone outside the hobby sphere. I write play-by-text roleplay -- but I call it a collaborative writing group and/or reference my D&D campaign offhandedly. I'm deeply into aquatic gardening and building beautiful fish tanks for my pet fish and invertebrates, but I just say I keep a couple of fish tanks. 

Makeup and beauty are probably my most mainstream interests. 😅 There are actually a lot of hobbies that people on the outside won't ever really 'get' if they're not interested. So just share what makes you comfortable, and there's no need to go into detail if they don't want to talk about it with you.

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I tailor my responses to the person I’m talking with. If they are a pet lover I use that approach. Sciencey type I go for the few sciencey things I know about fish keeping.  Humanitarian, nature lover etc. if I do not wish to interact with someone I go full on fish and use it like bear repellent, they nod try to quickly extricate themselves from the conversation then rarely try and chat again 🤣. If someone is actually a kind hearted genuine sincere person not an attention seeker they usually have something they are very passionate about. I start with a quick I have always loved Fishkeeping and have 6 tanks currently running. Then ask them what hobbies they are most passionate about or interested in or something they have truly loved always doing. I try and relate through similar experiences with fish keeping and their hobby. Most folks worth knowing to me enjoy always learning new things and love animals and nature so I don’t find it awkward…..unless I break out the bear repellent intentionally 🤣

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