let's play favorites, take 2

Thursday, June 11, 2009 |

I’ve done a ‘favorite things’ post before, which you can check out here. Today’s rematch utilizes the same idea with different topics. My sister requested a ‘silly things’ post, and I’m obliging her with this, but I think what she really meant was, “Make me laugh! That’s the point of this blog, isn’t it? Start entertaining me or I’ll un-follow you!” Maybe she wouldn’t resort to using so many exclamation points, but the same overall message, for sure. Bet you $10 I’m right.

Category Uma (that’s “one” in Portuguese): Actors. And by actors, I mean television and film actors. Not that I watch much television, really, so it’s mostly just movie stars we’re talking about. And to be fair, a friend asked me a couple of weeks ago to name my favorite actors. I couldn’t come up with anything on the spot, so the answer has now been percolating and coalescing in the back of my head for a while. Another thing: if the category were entitled “hot actors,” or “celebrities I wouldn’t mind going on a blind date with,” my answers would be quite different. This is instead a list of people I like to see on the screen because of how they inhabit a character, and the kinds of roles they choose. And because I’m not quite to the point where I think of ‘actor’ as a gender-neutral noun, the list will be all male. But that’s enough explaining and proviso-ing for now.

1. Clive Owen

2. Alan Rickman

3. Morgan Freeman (The only American in the bunch. See ‘accents’ section below for clarification.)

Honorable Mentions: Michael Caine, Colin Firth, Michael Gambon, Hugh Laurie, Eric Bana and (dare I mention him?) Keanu Reeves. I’m probably forgetting someone key as I type this, but if I had to guess, I’d say it was a British actor, over the age of 30. Geez, what was the first clue?

Category Dois: Accents. Do you ever turn your head in a crowd or perk up your ears when you hear a different language or a specific accent? I do it all the time. Airports are the best, because there are people from all over the world, traveling to…well, all over the world! I’m definitely attuned to the languages I speak: English, Spanish and Portuguese. And I could pick German, French and Italian out of a crowd for you, too. But this category is going to be about English language accents. And I’ll be honest, they’re best when voiced by a man. Preferably a young man with a deepish speaking voice. Ah, my European travels were lovely…

1. Scottish. I don’t know how I can say this without sounding really creepy…but I fell in love with the Scottish accent because of a 60 year-old man at a hostel in Gibraltar. No kidding. The man snored to wake the dead (I slept maybe 2 hours the whole night), but his accent and voice could charm you out of sleep deprivation. I’m a serious sleep addict, so that’s saying something. Even hearing him ask you to pass the bread and butter was charming. Sigh. Scots everywhere, I heart you.

2. Australian. All of the really good-looking and crazy English-speaking folk at hostels are Australian. Bar none. In every country, every hostel, there’s at least one, and they want to par-TAY. It doesn’t hurt that they sound delicious while they ask you to join, either.

3. Irish. A very melodic, hard to understand accent, but with lots of history, music, culture and centuries of allure (or would you call that magic?) to back it up. I met this guy in Brazil who said he was from Ireland, and I could have sworn that he said “Arlington.” Kind of ridiculous.

Honorable Mention: British public presenter voice. It’s the radio correspondent for the BBC or the commentators discussing the Wimbledon matches. Upper-crusty, well-enunciated words, sprinkled with just a hint of proper butler.

Category Três: Candies. I don’t have a traditional sweet tooth, but I do like candy every now and then. Like at a specific time of the month. Every month. Or with something bitter (like coffee) to tone it down. But candy isn’t something I think about. I remember being like every other kid in the world and wanting that candy bar in the grocery store checkout, but somewhere along the line I just stopped being tempted. So these are the candies that CAN tempt me, and are thus super special. Or maybe it’s just me that’s special. But still.

1. Lemonheads. Very retro, and the perfect movie-theater treat.

2. Swedish Fish. I think I fell in love with Swedish Fish at swim meets in middle school. They’re chewy, but also great to suck on and savor.

3. Ring Pops. Now these treats are really a throwback to swim meet awesomeness. Who doesn’t want to wear a huge ring around on their finger AND dye their tongue various colors? Only complication: what happens when you have to swim a heat, and you still have half a ring left?

Honorable Mentions: Pop Rocks, Warheads, Sour Patch Kids and Snickers (frozen, dude…only way to go).

Category Quatro: (Harmless) White Lies I Told My Parents. This is a dangerous category right from the start, because I know at least one of my parents reads this blog. I think I was basically a good kid. At least, the lies I could think of were tame, so I must have been. Didn’t have much to lie about, at least that I can remember. Well, except for the examples below. Maybe I WILL get in trouble. Scary!

1. I ate my dinner. On various occasions (when I was fairly young) I buried my dinner in the front yard instead of eating mushrooms or onions. It was either gag or go dig a hole while you were gone picking up the other kids from swim practice.

2. The movie at the neighbor’s sleepover party was PG. Bump that up to PG-13 (or even R?). But don’t worry, I was old enough.

3. I never did anything crazy with the high school swim team. Hah. I’m not ready to spill, but let’s just say that I did take part in team activities that were not, umm…sanctioned.



Anonymous said...

Hey, to start comprehending barbecue... check out the nytimes article on United Tastes about it. Not done with charcoal, not hamburgers, not a little sauce applied after the process.
Also, if you get a chance to see Good Morning England I recommend it.

Ginny Larsen said...


...or should i say:


you're funny, and i can't remember why i said "silly stuff" but i think it was mainly cause you'd been taking on "serious" issues lately, and i thought--she needs something light to fluff things up a bit.

and i'm totally with you on the accents thing. but you didn't include ewan mcgregor! HOTT HOTT HOTT accent. dude.

anyway, i think i've already told about the burying the food part, but thanks for leaving me out of it anyway.

love you tons. keep it up.

really old guy said...

So you buried your Mother's delicious mushrooms and onions?


It was sauerkraut that I hated (but eventually I DID eat because I had rationalized long enough and was still stuck at the table with my plate in front of me while everyone else was watching a good TV program). Besides, my parents were far too clever to let me go outside and bury my dinner.

We need to talk sometime about those after-swim events. Ha-ha.

Actually, I'm just VERY glad I didn't tell all of you about the stupid and dumb and idiotic things I did as a kid. I wouldn't want you repeating any of them.

Yeah...you were pretty tame. I'm blessed.

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