We learned there was a lot to love about American Idol‘s season 7 champ during his run of smoldering takes on Lionel Richie and Michael Jackson. Now, thanks to your unabated curiosity, we found out more winning details: Cook, 25, drives a Lexus hybrid SUV, does a celebrity impression (Kermit the Frog!) and is still dating former Idol finalist Kimberly Caldwell (“Things are good”). With a new self-titled solo album out, the Blue Springs, Mo., rocker talked to PEOPLE’s Monica Rizzo about dieting, dressing down and nesting in L.A.
What was your craziest fan encounter while on the Idol tour this summer?
SHAWNA WEISER, Des Moines
Somebody threw a female undergarment onstage. I caught them and thought it would be a bright idea to toss them at Archie [Idol runner-up David Archuleta], which freaked him out!
Would you rather eat hamburgers and live to be 50 or eat salad and live to be 100?
HEATHER BERGERON, Keene, N.H.
Probably eat hamburgers and die at 50. I’d rather live fast and die young than eat salads every day.
You wear a lot of interesting T-shirts. Which is your favorite and why?
LAURA MOUNT, Greensboro, N.C.
I have one says “Geeks for Peace” that’s probably my favorite because I think I’m a geek.
How is your brother Adam doing? [Cook’s older sibling has been battling brain cancer since 1998.]
PATRICIA McGRADY, Boonsboro, Md.
Adam is doing very well. Thank you for asking. He is continuing treatment, and we are all cautiously optimistic.
Did you ever get things stuck in your nose as a kid?
GWEN D., Corpus Christi, Texas
No. So far in 25 years, I’ve managed to not get anything stuck up my nose. But a kid that I went to elementary school with got a pencil stuck in his nose. I remember he came back to class with gauze stuck up his nose and no pencil.
Could you describe your dream house?
NICOLE, Mansfield, Ohio
I like a clean look. I don’t like a whole lot of clutter, despite the fact that I’m a pack rat. I get into art deco furniture and monochromatic stuff, so a lot of whites and blacks. But nothing too big—I don’t want to feel like I live in a museum.
What is the first thing you do on your day off?
JOVELYN, San Pedro, Calif.
I don’t know what a day off is! But the first thing is sleep in as long as I possibly can. The problem is I’ve gotten so used to getting up early that sleeping in is like 9 a.m. I’m into being domestic, so I enjoy going to Bed, Bath and Beyond, Best Buy and Target for my house in L.A.
What’s the most romantic thing you’ve done for a woman?
KAREN CHAUDHRY, Jacksonville, Fla.
You’d have to ask the girls I’ve done romantic things for. But I know the most unromantic thing I’ve ever done: In high school, I thought it was a good idea to buy this girl I was dating this large candle with three wicks for Christmas. There was no motive behind it. But she got me a back scratcher, so I think we’re even.
You have very nice, clear, porcelain skin. What do you do to keep your skin looking so good?
LORIE COOK, Yulee, Fla.
[Laughs] Wow. That is making me blush. I don’t do anything. Not even soap and water. Now watch, because she asked that question, I’ll wake up tomorrow and my whole face will be broken out. We’ll have to cancel all the press and promos!
See the American Idol answer more of your questions at people.com/cookvideo