Everyone Likes a List

Everyone likes a list.

Lists were extremely popular in the mid-noughties when Channel 4 went about compiling Top 50’s concerning varying aspects of pop-culture.

Then they stopped. Not a negative. It was just one of those things Channel 4 did for a while.

Bless ‘em.

And now we have Buzzfeed, a website of contributors with a seemingly limitless number of lists regarding that which I “Won’t Believe”, typically telling of celebrities and how they’re imperfect.

Judging from this thus-far five paragraph spiel you might think I’ve not one of those that I myself have listed in the category of “Everyone” liking a list.

But I do.

I like them a lot.

Typically on my own, though I find a list is also enjoyable when shared with a friend or colleague.

And it is in this state that the topic of the list becomes something I feel really rather passionate about.

Such as the following.

My Top Three Favourite Lines from Films.

Just three; so relax.

This isn’t going to take up your day or deteriorate your mentality to any worthwhile degree. For me anyway, if I could literally make you less intelligent just by your reading this then I’d indulge profusely.

Because I don’t like competition. And I don’t share well; particularly planets. Hintitty hint hint.

Number 3

Spoken by Jamie Foxx as Django in *Django Unchained*.

“I like the way you die boy”.


The vengeful meal being devoured there by the protagonist is, though not being served cold, being immensely tucked into whilst still as hot as the sun beating down on them in the cotton field. Like a bullwhip of devastating victory bearing down upon you; he says that line. And then…

One shot. Killed thoroughly.

Vengeance taken by the fire-breathing former victim, a gun and then a whip, but nothing means as much as the throat-cutting line of “I like the way you die boy”.

For Django, in this scene, he is victorious in body and mind, whilst the slave driver dies hearing a return to his grotesque insult of “I like the way you beg boy” being upped and forgotten. And then he dies.

Victory total and vengeance absolute.

I sit here and tingle in a way I’d never tell my family about, though I’d express to you here because this is a list, and everyone likes a list.

Django could have fucked the offender’s mother, but he said this instead.

And it’s tremendous.

And it’s the better choice.

I have my reservations about a woman who raises a slave driver.

Number 2

Spoken twice, once second better than the former, by Julia Roberts and then Hugh Grant in *Notting Hill*.

Bear with me comrades.

I’m just a girl, standing in front of a boy, asking him to love her”.

Just allow that remarkable sentence to envelope you and to blossom open those most intimate memory cells from through your life.

Ubiquitous and familiar, entirely personal and perhaps the most important of moments within the many moments of our lives; we are all aware of it.

It certainly matters.

A shining example, laid down here by Richard Curtis, of heart-rending honesty to bring down all walls of ego so as to give you an unexpected rendezvous with the memory you have hidden away in your most sacred chambers of the mind.

That feeling you think of every day in either joy or melancholy.

Exquisitely both.

Painfully one, and with the other of such heights you would never yield it to forgotten lore. It means all what you are.

Not in so many words does this occur (“asking him to love her”) but the situation spoken in the line is ubiquitous and it is so much of a familiarity that when Julia Roberts first speaks it we are struck by the fact that this is a reality shared by us all.

Despite all the poetry written, you thought you felt this with no other to recognise the feeling?

Via Richard Curtis; you are apparently not.

For a man to a woman, a woman to a man, charming and wooing with the intent of the best part of our time together or, as spoken, quite explicitly asking someone to love you; we are familiar and we feel it then as we hear the line spoken – just as though another has reached into our very souls and knocked; just to let us know that there is someone else who knows. And feels.

This reality of the situation, the fact that it is known and kept by us all (perhaps following a certain general age), is forwarded further by Curtis who then repeats the sentiment, though now with an audience of variety for the speaker (this time Hugh Grant’s character: Will Thacker).

In this scene, as Will retells the tale of what occurred previously in his travel book shop with the girl he loves, Curtis slowly pans the shot across the group of friends, showing their expression and their own private familiarity of love being plainly reached out for by one who feels it so they cannot contain nor can they express.

Just a girl, standing in front of a boy, asking him to love her”.

Of course there are connotations to the phrasing of this line in particular owing to the girl being the asking. It is from this we conjure the idea of a very young women, perhaps inexperienced in love but feeling it no less that a regular combatant, stating plainly her love for a boy and asking him to love her back. Because we love and need love back, and sometimes we have to ask (in a manner of speaking).

If not directly to ask, then to woo (if we can), though to ask directly is certainly unusual and it is undoubtedly a method far braver than any I have dared.

I’m a wooer.

The camera pans across the faces of the friends of Will and shows their shock at the shared and personal beauty of the sentiment and how it echoes in their own lives.

Will states the line, the situation, and the camera cuts from him to the friends whilst he is still speaking and it is in this moment that, via this wonderful line, that Will becomes the narrator of the tale timeless and the entirety of the film itself.

If a woman were to be saying it, I would imagine her to being saying it in a blue dress with bobby socks on. Carrying books. Erroneously ashamed of her spectacles.

Because it is innocent and pure, no matter whatever has come before.

The emotion emitted in this one line is the equivalent of what can be the most special moment of our lives being spoken in word form.

And it is wonderful.

So much so they said it twice.

Good for them.

Number 1

*Wayne’s World 2* (a just title. Attempt to deny it isn’t as such. Try it).

Del, the world tour-worn roadie intended to represent the living tales of the heydays of rock and roll, is playing the part of the old war horse, with a gang of young faces and eagerly listening and admiring ears at his hand whilst he nonchalantly lights another cigarette.

And then he tells his story.

What turns out to potentially be his only story, about the tiger, the M&Ms, the little sweet shop and the shop keep and his son.

I’ll write nothing explicitly of what he says, save to say that when I would attempt, being all teenage and in awe, to repeat this tale within my group of friends I would fail most sweetly as I inevitably went about cackling in built up reaction to such a hilarious piece of dialogue.

It can be seen here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k_7kg5ZzDZo

A real beauty by Mike Myers there.

And that’s my list for now.

That will do.

I know I was meant to write my next piece about my being the greatest human to ever live, but I did this instead.

Plus I’m not entirely sure what you’re going to do about it since I’m the greatest human to ever live and you’re sitting down.

Yeah. Accomplish something and make me. You chair user.

But, wait a momentous moment there pally, for what if I were to write reasons for my being the greatest human to ever live in list form?!

By gosh I’d bet you’d stand up and accomplish something then. Feel free to make me once in list form, sugar.

So to it; intention number 1: begin list series regarding reasons for my being the greatest human to ever live, number 2: write the first reason, number 3: write this regarding the essential reality of my superb ego and why it’s better than yours, number 4 (and finally): continue the series without concern for the months approaching and soon to be passing and just get it typed.

Thanks for reading.

I liked the *Notting Hill* part best.