The Favorites List
Let's jump right in, shall we?
1. Favorite Book
Tough one. If we're talking physical book, then I'd have to say The Norton Shakespeare 2nd Edition. I ADORE this book, and regard it as one of the only two things I took away from college (the second being also a book: Will Write For Food by Dianne Jacob).
But! If we're talkin' single narrative, there is no book I love better than Leave It To Psmith by my kindred spirit P. G. Wodehouse. My grandmother loaned me this book while I was on jury duty, saying that P. G. Wodehouse's style reminded her of my own. While I do maintain that Wodehouse is lightyears better than me in terms of writing ability, I cannot help but feel a connection to him whenever I read. Many of the things he does upon the page are things I love to do, making the experience like a chat with a very close friend.
I HIGHLY recommend P. G. Wodehouse's work!
2. Favorite Author
I have four...
The first three favorites I regard as influences: Jane Austen, Charles Dickens, and William Shakespeare. I call 'em the Big Three. Lady J, Chuck, and Bill. The triple threat of literature. The tenacious trifecta of terrifically talented writers.
Last, but in no conceivable way least, my kindred spirit P. G. Wodehouse. I do not regard him as an influence, because by the time I was introduced to his work, my writing style had already been established. But, as stated in point number one, discovering his work was like discovering a rare friend who "gets me."
3. Favorite Kids’ book
Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax. Easily one of the most meaningful and powerful stories ever written. And to anyone who thinks that book is simply about "save the trees," a simple environmental message, I would argue that you have greatly missed the point.
4. Favorite Literary hero
Can I say Batman? Because I love Batman!
5. Favorite Literary Heroine
Elizabeth Bennet. Marry me.
6. My celebrity crush
Anyone who knows me already knows the answer to this one—Jennifer Aniston. I’d probably faint if I ever had the pleasure of meeting her.
Jennifer, my dear, if you’re reading this, please send me an email via my Contact Page. You and I need to set up an afternoon coffee date, sometime. My treat…or maybe your treat. I'm just a simple starving artist. But I promise, I would show you the absolute best afternoon your money can buy!
7. Favorite Movie
Frank Capra’s 1939 classic, Mr. Smith Goes to Washington. A MUST watch! Go. Right now. Go get a copy and watch it.
8. Favorite film Actor
Tie. Jimmy Stewart and Cary Grant. A real dynamic duo, right there!
9. Favorite Film Actress
Arguably one of the handsomest and most talented women to ever grace the silver screen.
10. Favorite Film Franchise
STAR WARS! That is, until recently…
Yes, I am one of those disgruntled Star Wars fans, who now pretends there are only three films in the franchise, all of which were made pre-1984.
Indiana Jones would have made the cut, if it wasn't for Crystal Skull. To me, Crystal Skull was the worst addition to an amazing franchise I had ever seen (including Jar Jar Binks and company)…WAS, that is, until I saw Luke Skywalker milk a sea moose.
11. Favorite Film Hero (no literary adaptations)
Jefferson Smith, from Mr. Smith Goes to Washington. Seriously, we need to get a Jeff Smith in office! You'll know what I mean when you get up off your bum and rent the movie!
12. Favorite Film Heroine (no literary adaptations)
I’m going Mary (Hatch) Bailey from Frank Capra's 1946 film It's a Wonderful Life. Who wouldn't want a Mary Hatch in their life?
13. Favorite TV Show
I'm not a big TV watcher, but I really enjoy Friends and Frasier. I also really like The Big Bang Theory. Matthew Perry and Jim Parsons are two wildly talented actors.
Side point: I think Frasier is often overlooked as one of the greatest shows of all time. I think most people forget that it ran for eleven seasons, and did so during the same time Friends aired—and it held it's own, too, coming it at number three the year Friends came in at number two (1999).
14. Favorite TV Actor
No surprise, another tie: Matthew Perry and Jim Parsons.
15. Favorite TV actress
My celebrity crush, Jennifer Aniston. C’mon, was that a surprise?
16. Favorite cartoon
Let’s do cartoon character, as I don’t really watch cartoons. Hands down, the best cartoon character is Daffy Duck. Nope. This is not up for discussion! He’s the best. That's all there is to it. I said put your hands down!
17. Favorite store
Anywhere I can get my PROOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOTEIN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
18. Favorite food
Not. Easy. At. All. Let me put it this way: I have a Sicilian mother. You do the math. Any time I can get my hands on her cooking, it’s a good day. It also tends to kickoff another stint at the gym.
However, if I had to choose, I'd say pizza—specifically the pizzas I make. It's not that I make the best pizzas (although they're pretty darn good, if I do say so myself); it's that I have SO much fun making the pizzas! I look forward to it all week! On Saturday night, I set up my kitchen with all my ingredients, turn on my favorite opera (Rossini's La Cenerentola, the 1981 film version with Frederica Von Stade and Claudio Desderi), and just have a blast singin' and cookin'!
19. Favorite color
Though I tend to paint with all the colors of the wind, my favorite with which to etch upon the canvass, or don as I waltz down Broadway with a high-steppin' strut, would have to be blue. Azul. Bleu. Hyachintho. 藍色. Maybe it's because I’m a Pisces. You know—water sign, and all.
20. Favorite Band
Another nearly impossible one! All right, let's break it down by band and singer. For favorite band, no one beats The Backstreet Boys. NO ONE!
Side note: Backstreet Boys was the first album I ever owned. Those guys are still rocking’! Backstreet's back—all right!! And I am not ashamed!
As for singer, I have never in all my life heard a more beautiful, awe-inspiring, wildly talented voice than the one gifted to us from the heart (and probably massive lungs) of Luciano Pavarotti. Just listen to this clip from his Gala Concert in Munich. While I have SO MANY favorite Pavarotti songs, the vocal control in this few seconds gives me chills every time I hear it.
21. Favorite Song
Eeesh. That’s hard!
One song that completely fills me to the brim is Scegli la sposa / Cavatina: Come un'ape ne'giorni d'aprile (Choose the bride / Cavatina: Like a bee on April days) from the 1981 film version of Rossini's La Cenerentola. This is by far my favorite part of my favorite opera. The way Claudio Desderi sings this line, and the orchestra accompanying him, gets me every time:
"Per pietà, quelle ciglia abbassate.Galoppando se n' va la ragione, e fra i colpi d'un doppio cannone spalancata la breccia é di già."
22. Favorite holiday
Christmas. Easy. I love winter, I love the lights, I love the music, I love the spirit—I love it all!
23. Favorite Sport
Basketball and hockey. I was known as "The Rebound Man" when I played basketball as a kid, and was once so committed to a rebound with an equally committed opponent that I dragged that opponent by the basketball we were both stubbornly clutching all the way to half court. Why the refs didn't blow the whistle until I reached the half court line, I cannot say for sure. It was probably because the scene of two ten-year-olds death-gripping the same basketball, one lying flat on their back with their arms over their head, while the other, hunched over, is dragging them across the squeaky floor, was just too priceless to stop.
As for hockey, I love to watch it, but I can't skate.
24. Favorite animal
The animal inside of me.
25. Favorite Quote
“The powerful play goes on, and you may contribute a verse. What will your verse be?”
- Mr. John Keating (portrayed by the late great Robin Williams in Dead Poets Society, 1989).
O, Captain, my captain. May you rest in peace. You are dearly missed.
And that's all, folks! I was going to release a Part III for this series; but after looking over the questions for the final post, I decided it would just be more of the same, and that I'd just end up boring you. However, if you would like me to release a Part III, contact me via my contacts page with some questions, and I'll make a post as soon as I have 25 good ones.
Thanks for reading!
C. K. Conners
©2018 by C. K. Conners