I don’t have a favorite song, but I have a favorite band. I don’t have a favorite author, but I do have a favorite book. There are favorite teams in various sports, favorite cities, people, but not movies or words. There is even a favorite spelling of the word favorite. Yep, you guessed it…
What allows one thing to be preferred over another depends a great deal on my age. As a kid, I loved pepperoni pizza more than any other food. In my 40’s, pizza is way down the list, and pepperoni is not even in my top three types. My favorite television show used to be Miami Vice (I was 14, forgive me), while now I prefer things a bit less…dated. My favorite drink used to be Coke while now I prefer good spring water or coffee.
Here are some things I used to like, still like and now like.
Music-My first favorite band was most likely the Beatles. At the age of 8, I fell in love with KISS (thanks to the Destroyer album purchased from the DI). When I was 13, I flirted with three different bands: The Police, U2 and Big Country. By the time I was 14, Big Country had won out. Maybe I liked the idea that they were a bit obscure to most people I knew. I know it was one of the first records I bought with my own money, which gave them some significance. They remain in my top five today. At the age of 17, thanks to a late afternoon listen to the B-side of a greatest hits collection, I was introduced to The Cure. My affection for them also continues, but they were supplanted in 1996 by TOOL, who made my (still) absolute favorite album of all time that same year. Frustrated by the lack of catalog, I found myself searching for other bands and in 2004 shifted part of my loyalty to ISIS (my favorite memory of ISIS is the lady in her 50’s reading my octopus t-shirt as “ahh, I get it. Is, is.”), and that loyalty was rewarded by three full albums, 5 live records and a split release with the Melvins, while in that same time period, TOOL has provided me one record. Even after disbanding, ISIS continues to release live records, unreleased tracks and other material. I would have never listened to a band like ISIS when I was 17 or 26. They are not for everyone, but they are for me.
Books- The Call of the Wild topped my list when I was around 10. At 11 I read Watership down for the first time and was hooked. This book has impacted my reaction to every other book I have read. While certainly not the best written, or even the most poignant, something about the story spoke to me, making me want to read more books, more stories. I attribute my love of reading, and my eventual study of literature to this book. In my twenties, I fell in love with Vonnegut’s Cats Cradle and put it right next to Watership. Not until 2004, when I read Cloud Atlas, by David Mitchell, did I have a new favorite book. I think it is near perfect. You should certainly read it.
Sports- My first favorite baseball team was the St. Louis Cardinals. I played on a little league team for two years that shared the same name, so the allegiance seemed to make sense. Ozzie Smith was my favorite player. When I changed teams and played for the Cubs, they became my favorite and since as a young teen, I wanted to cheer for teams that struggled, I stuck with the Cubs until I was 21. A mission served in New England brought me a connection with the Red Sox, one that continues to this day.
There have only ever been two NBA teams for me-The Boston Celtics (as they one of three teams always on TV and I hated the Lakers and Sixers) and the Utah Jazz. I had affection for the Bulls the year they beat the Lakers, but the Jazz, being local, have my complete loyalty.
I have loved so many NFL teams, starting with the Denver Broncos, then moving from year to year to the Miami Dolphins, the Dallas Cowboys (hard to admit, but they were Super Bowl Champions), the San Francisco 49ers, Washington Redskins (one season), back to the Dolphins, then back to the Broncos. After watching the Cardinals and Giants play to a 3-3 tie on Monday Night Football, I was attracted to the lovable losing (and drawing) ways of the Giants. Little did I know they would not be losers for long. Five Super Bowl appearances and 4 wins later, I still love The Giants. I have a connection with the Arizona Cardinals as I travel every year to watch them play, so they get to slide into my second favorite slot, but my heart bleeds Giants blue. That said, if any team were to move to Salt Lake, they would instantly become my favorite team. Because I have watched and loved so many teams, Football is my favorite sport. Unlike other major sports, I like a player or three on each team and can watch almost any team play and enjoy myself.
I have just started enjoying NHL hockey and MLS soccer, so the team lists are shorter. I am currently attracted to the Bruins and the Coyotes in the NHL and have a bursting loyalty for Real Salt Lake in the MLS. Friends keep wanting me to watch the English Premier League, and while I enjoy almost every match I catch, I really have no connection to any teams. It doesn’t help that I don’t like watching games on delay, and refuse to get up at 5 in the morning to watch matches live.
What a boring list! I almost want to delete this, but I did spend an hour thinking it through, reading and typing, remembering. The whole process is making me very hungry. I need a sandwich, or maybe some taquitos. I have some in the freezer. I think there might even be some ice cream in there as well.
And so you know, my favorite city is New York.