Twenty-five things you might not know about John McCain:

1. He has a stuffed dancing hamster on display in his Senate office.

2. His wife says her obsession with electronics and technology is one of his pet peeves.

3. He says his pet peeve is politicians who talk too much. (He admits that he's guilty, too, sometimes.)

4. He's not much of a shopper, but he likes to buy rugs when traveling abroad.

5. His favorite book is "For Whom the Bell Tolls" by Ernest Hemingway.

6. He was addicted to the TV show "24."

7. He carries a lucky penny in his pocket.

8. He played Scrooge in the POWs' staging of "A Christmas Carol" at the Hanoi Hilton.

9. His movie favorites include "It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World," "Casablanca," and "Viva Zapata!" He and wife Cindy have seen "Mamma Mia!" twice.

10. He talks to fellow prisoners of war, those with whom he shared a cell in Vietnam, almost daily.

11. He has seven children. The first two he adopted from his first wife's previous marriage, the third was born to him and his first wife, the next three were born to him and his second wife, and the seventh they adopted from Mother Teresa's orphanage in Bangladesh. He has four grandchildren.

12. His wife was in Bangladesh on a charity mission and brought home baby Bridget without checking first with McCain.

13. He describes himself as "a person who is mostly normal."

14. His parents "eloped" and got married at Caesar's Bar in Tijuana, Mexico; McCain's grandfather accompanied them.

15. He's serious about the finer points of barbecuing, and he likes to deep-fry turkeys in peanut oil.

16. He wasn't happy when Hudson, the neighbors' black Lab, ate the tenderloin he'd been marinating to grill for dinner at their ranch in Sedona, Ariz.

17. He doesn't like to be alone.

18. At Christmastime, he likes to supervise the lighting of about 1,000 luminaria candles on their property in Sedona with family and friends.

19. Going on vacation with him is anything but relaxing. His children call it "Camp McCain."

20. He's an early-bird, not a night-owl.

21. He doesn't e-mail. He doesn't surf the Web. He likes to read the newspaper in print. He's attached to his cell phone.

22. His office window sill is overrun with stacks of books. He hands books off to friends once he's read them.

23. He's into fruit trees. And birds. He keeps binoculars and bird books at the ready in Sedona. His pet collection: two dogs, two turtles, a cat, a ferret, three parakeets and 13 saltwater fish.

24. His wife is super-rich. They have a prenuptial agreement.

25. He programmed digital remotes at the family's homes in Phoenix and Washington so they can call up DVDs in any room.