If you haven't read the book yet and are planning to you should really try to avoid spoilers. When I first read the book it was quite a revalation and like Jimi said, It's a big part of what makes the book what it is.
Gaming is actually my second biggest hobby nowadays. What I spend most of my time with (when I'm not with friends) is reading. I love reading, I finish 1-2 books a week. Other then that I enjoy watching sports on TV. I mostly watch soccer and MMA with some NHL thrown in now and then.