Among strange obsessions, metal-detecting is right up there. I once had a Canadian acquaintance here in Prague that would talk about almost nothing else. He and his strange friends would go off to the west Bohemian woods to search for Celtic artifacts. They did it in the dark to avoid being detected themselves; not out of embarrassment but out of fear of arrest.
But I don't deny that it can be addictive - in the same way that gambling can. I just read this funny Slate article by a woman who tries things that most people wouldn't be caught dead doing, but which others seem to find very compelling. To her surprise, she gets hooked on metal detecting. Her husband thinks she might need help.
My husband begged me to give it up. When I refused he said, "Maybe you need to put yourself in the hands of a higher power."
"Yes, the Bounty Hunter Sharp Shooter II," I replied.