Things I like and dislike (with apologies to Amélie)

I recently re-watched Amélie (again), and was reminded of the charming and succinct way that new characters are introduced. Upon first encountering a character they are defined by the narrator in terms of their likes and dislikes … Do you remember too?

Take for instance Amelie’s mother:

‘Amandine Poulain is a school mistress who has always had shaky nerves. She dislikes puckered fingers in the bath, having her hand touched by strangers, pillow marks on her cheek in the morning. She likes figure skaters’ costumes on TV, polishing the parquet, emptying her hand bag, cleaning it out and putting everything back in.’

This got me thinking about those odd little things that I like and dislike. I didn’t want to focus on general annoyances and irritations (of which I have a lot), but instead wanted to figure out some particularly unique things that get to me in either a positive or a negative way. So here it goes:

‘Tracey is a frustrated writer who dreams her way through life. She dislikes price stickers that aren’t easy to remove, people touching magazines before she’s read them, and sultanas in curry. She likes the sound of dog claws clicking on wooden floor boards, secondhand books with handwritten notes, and noticing spelling mistakes on advertising signs.’

I think I could probably come up with at least another twenty personal likes and dislikes, but it’s more fun to keep proceedings short. How about you? Do you have some oddities that you’d like to share? … It’s fun, I promise!


  1. Jess

    Oooh… love it!

    It’ s too early in the morning for me to be coming up with clever responses though – I’ll have to think about it! ;D

    1. tracey (Post author)

      Hi Jess – Haha, I just bet you’re an early morning person (you’re always busy, busy, busy) 😉

      I love Amelie … I forget how good a movie is sometimes … 🙂

  2. Gabrielle Bryden

    Bwahahaha – this is amazing – I don’t have to write one, because mine is almost identical to yours. It was just yesterday that I was telling my kids that I cannot stand sultanas in curry – the texture and the taste (what crazy chef invented that combination).

    There might be a couple more things. It annoys me when people just know they are right – no room for being flexible. The only thing certain in this world is that we are probably wrong about most things. I don’t like it when people take life too seriously. Never assume anything – it makes an ass out of u and me (my hubby always says that, and he’s right). Anyone who is cruel to animals needs a good bonk on the nose as well – just sayin’.

    1. tracey (Post author)

      Hi Gabrielle – Haha … great minds think alike … we share much in the way of good thought. Surely there’s a writing collaboration in our future? 😉

      I have NO idea why anyone would ever, ever think that adding sultanas to a curry is a good idea (I’m so glad you agree!!) … I personally think such a thing goes against the laws of nature! 😉

      I love what you’ve added into the mix too – I absolutely hate it when people have such arrogance to think they are always right … I much prefer to stay open to the world and ideas. Life should definitely not be taken too seriously … sometimes I find I get too caught up in my thoughts, and must remind myself to relax and just have fun. Assumption is a problem which many people seem to fall under the spell of (your husband is definitely right on that one). And yes, anyone who is at all cruel to animals really needs to get sorted out – I have a big problem with that too.

      PS. I hope Michael had a lovely 10th birthday. 🙂

      1. Gabrielle Bryden

        He had a terrific birthday. We should do a collaboration sometime – I’m always open to suggestions 🙂 Something about the strange people who don’t like Nicolas Cage maybe – haha (I’ll think of something).

        1. tracey (Post author)

          Hi Gabrielle – Oh I’m so glad to hear that Michael had a great birthday! I’ll get my thinking cap on too about future writing projects … there are so many examples of our unique and wonderfully good taste that simply must be shared with the world! 😉

  3. kellie

    I love this! It also reminds me of that scene in Bridget Jones where she is told to introduce people with some fact about them!

    I can’t narrow it down, but I agree with yours ~ I particularly hate it when people come to visit and pick up one of my magazines and start flipping through it!

    1. tracey (Post author)

      Hi Kellie – Oh yes, I forgot about that ‘introduction’ scene in Bridget Jones … I’m crazy about people touching my magazines before I get a chance to … I’m not sure what that says about me, I’m not that pedantic about most other things! 🙂

  4. Nico

    This is fun…

    Nico is in her thirties and still hasn’t figured out what she’s doing with her life. She likes large comfy pants, the sound of bottles of wine clinking together as they are carried home, the smell of her cat’s neck, and mixing her own shades of ink to draw into her fountain pen. She dislikes lipstick stains on coffee mugs, people who squash you on public transport, and the sound of whispering.

    1. tracey (Post author)

      Hi Nico – Gosh, I’m still figuring out what I’m doing with my life too … I really need to work on not wishing so much of my time away … I absolutely love your introduction of likes and dislikes.

      Comfy pants are a definite plus, and yes that sound of wine bottles clinking together is wonderful … the thought of things to come is sweet anticipation. I remember that my cat used to have a lovely smell like roasted nuts … I miss having a cat sometimes (we’re currently a dog house). Oh mixing your own shades of ink is pretty special … how wonderful! 🙂

      I hate, hate, hate lipstick stains on mugs too … you well know my distaste for all things ‘public interaction’ on public transport!! 🙂 … as I mentioned to you the other day, the sound of whispering is unpleasant … almost like that feeling of fingernails running down a chalkboard … ick!

  5. DrMobs


    DrMobs is a hard core scientist who doesn’t suffer fools gladly. When she hangs out the clothes, the colour of the pegs on each item always match. She likes the laughter of small children, Twitter, smooth milk chocolate and drivers who wave. She dislikes the use of “off” instead of “from”, people who don’t move their lips when they speak, causations assumed from correlations, LAX and complete outfits removed in one foul swoop and left in the laundry basket like an insideout ragdoll.

    1. tracey (Post author)

      Hi DrMobs – I have much respect for hard core scientists (I regret not being able to become one … my old science degree is getting dusty on a shelf somewhere) … I think the older I become the less tolerant I become of fools.

      I love that your pegs match on your clothes … I don’t think I’ve ever paid attention to that (I’m pretty inattentive when it comes to laundry). Haha, drivers that wave are the best (actually I received a massive, over-the-top thumbs up from a driver the other day – that was pretty awesome too).
      Your whole list of likes and dislikes was a delight to read … it’s absolutely wonderful!!! 😀

      I too can’t stand it when people remove their outfits without going to the trouble of undoing buttons, unrolling sleeves, emptying pockets etc … laundry rage is a constant battle for me! 😉

  6. Kimberley

    Confession, I have not seen Amelie..
    I think when it first came out, I meant to, maybe I tried, and I thought (even for me) it was too cutesy. Perhaps I should revisit it..

    1. tracey (Post author)

      Hi Kimberley – Oh, you really must try and revisit Amelie one day … I know what you mean about the ‘cutesy’ factor, but the sweetness ultimately shines through for me. 🙂


  7. Guy 'Dhyan' Traiber

    a wonderful film with amazing music. really one i can watch again and again..

    1. tracey (Post author)

      Hi Guy – Yes agreed, the music in Amelie is wonderful … and I love the pace at which the film is shot. It really is a delight.

      Thanks so much for stopping by! 🙂

      1. Guy 'Dhyan' Traiber

        it is my pleasure.
        you are on my reader for sometime now. i don’t always have anything to say.. i am happy i did at this time..

        until later,

        1. tracey (Post author)

          Hi Guy – Well it’s always lovely to meet one of my readers! 🙂

  8. jason

    usually i’m not a fan of this kind of intro, but i liked yrs a lot because it was real, about a real person who exists and feels these ways. also, i have never had a curry with sultanas in it (apparently i’m lucky) but now i have to go find out what a sultana is.

    1. tracey (Post author)

      Hi Jason – I agree with you, sometimes that direct kind of character introduction employed by certain movies just doesn’t work because it seems too forced. But it certainly was a fun exercise to try and work out some things that I like and dislike. Thanks for reading! 🙂

  9. jason

    ewwww…a grape? in a curry? jesus, why not just throw in some raisins?

    1. tracey (Post author)

      Hi Jason – Haha, your reaction to finding out what a sultana is was absolutely priceless … you really made me laugh!! 😀
      I’m so glad the thought of sultanas in curry seems foreign to you as well … it really bothers me (and I can eat most things quite happily!).

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