In Character.

Cookie Monster interviewed on NPR. It’s as delightful as you would hope.

The “In Character” feature on NPR got me thinking . . . who is my favorite fictional character? Though it can be from literature, film, television, or song, they specifically want it to be American, so my first thought, Anne Shirley, isn’t an option. I mulled it over. Lord Peter Wimsey, for his humor and the way he uses it to deflect his true feelings, also isn’t an option. Neither is Elizabeth Bennet, though I always think she is just a little too clever to be my friend. In fact, most of my childhood favorites aren’t eligible: Bilbo Baggins (though I think he’s more admirable than affecting), Lucy Pevensie (now I think she’s kind of annoying, to be honest), Neville Longbottom (I didn’t read him when I was a kid, but I would take him over Harry Potter any day of the week). I admire Laura Ingalls and Jo March, but there’s also a distance between us in how tomboyish they are. I love a lot of TV shows, but none of the women I can think of seem quite well-rounded enough: Rory and Lorelai Gilmore, Monica Geller, Veronica Mars, Lindsay Weir, Angela Chase. Now, Claire Huxtable, maybe, for the way that she works, parents, and can kick your butt at the same time. A lot of my favorite movie characters seem a little too old and cosmopolitan: Kathleen Kelly, Sabrina Fairchild. Maybe I could go the obvious route and choose Atticus or Scout Finch, but though I admire that book more than I can say, I wouldn’t choose those characters (though I plan to reread it this year, so maybe I will change my mind). I can’t decide if Mary Russell is American enough. She’s anther who’s probably a little too smart to be my friend.

In the end, I think my favorite fictional character is Vicky Austin. Perhaps since Madeleine L’Engle felt so close to Vicky, there’s something more real and fallible about her than other characters. I know what it’s like to need time alone, to lose yourself in a book. I know what it’s like to feel as if you don’t measure up, to feel awkward and unsure. And I know what it’s like to have big questions about life and death and suffering. Madeleine L’Engle, through Vicky, taught me that those questions are okay, that they aren’t incompatible with a life of faith. It’s because of Vicky that my favorite Psalm is 121. I still, like Vicky, am learning what it means to be me.

I do really like cookies, though. So maybe I should have just gone with Cookie Monster.

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10 Comments

  1. Cookie Monster is always safe as a fall back fav.

    Posted 2/26/2008 at | Permalink
  2. Oooh, such a great idea!
    I, too, love Vicky Austin, and also Meg Murry (I think it’s the science connection that I like best about Meg though, it’s more personality with Vicky). I might be tempted by Jane Eyre or Elinor Dashwood (we both have some of the same issues expressing emotions) if they were American. Or how about Pam? πŸ™‚

    Posted 2/26/2008 at | Permalink
  3. The only song I’ve ever written (and probably ever will write) was based on Psalm 121. I love the idea that God never sleeps – He’s always watching over us, yet I can’t even pray before bed without falling asleep before I’m finished with the prayer. Thank God His love is unconditional.

    Posted 2/26/2008 at | Permalink
  4. Kari

    I wondered if anyone was going to say Pam. I can relate to Pam in some ways, but . . . she was engaged to Roy. I can’t figure that one out.

    Posted 2/26/2008 at | Permalink
  5. I don’t mind saying Pam… although she was engaged to Roy, I’ve made similar LARGE mistakes in the realm of love and dating. Pam’s real, and sometimes confused. πŸ™‚ Definitely a character I can identify with.

    Posted 2/27/2008 at | Permalink
  6. I’ve been thinking about this for a while. Is it sad that I really want to answer Luke Danes? πŸ˜‰

    Posted 3/1/2008 at | Permalink
  7. Kari

    No. He is still the awesome. I could make a list if you need a list.

    Posted 3/1/2008 at | Permalink
  8. Oh, I’ll gladly take a list of Luke’s awesome qualities. πŸ™‚

    Posted 3/1/2008 at | Permalink
  9. Kari

    In no particular order:

    1. He knows how to sew. And made a tent for Rory’s bon voyage party.

    2. He knows how to make an entrance. When he busted through Lorelai’s door, tipped her back, and kissed her.

    3. He is a good cook.

    4. He can find Easter eggs like nobody’s business.

    5. This one time, he punched Christopher in the face and it was awesome.

    6. He knows the romantic way to do this, dammit.

    7. He drove Lorelai to the hospital.

    8. He brought ice to the party.

    9. He never forgot Rory’s birthday. Or her graduation.

    10. He tried to beat up Dean that one time after Dean dumped Rory. “Turn around, bag boy.”

    11. Whenever he would hug Jess, he would always touch him on the back of his head.

    12. He was always always there for his sister, who is ridiculous. Including taking Jess in and giving him a home.

    13. He took the mattress in and out and in and out for Rory.

    14. He always fixed things for the girls.

    15. He had cash to lend Lorelai for the inn and he bought the building next to him, so he has apparently managed his money quite well.

    16. Luke can dance. (I’m typing this like I’m surprised I still have my clothes on.)

    17. He can be a movie guy. If you like movies.

    18. He taught Lorelai how to fish.

    19. He found out he had a mysterious daughter who appeared from nowhere, and he did everything he could to have a relationship with her.

    20. He makes the coffee.

    Posted 3/2/2008 at | Permalink
  10. 16 killed me. :cackle:

    Posted 3/2/2008 at | Permalink

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