11/17/2008 at 01:00 AM EST
When we asked readers to send American Idol
Season 7 runner-up David Archuleta
questions, hundreds flooded our inbox, asking everything from "Will you record a Spanish album?" ("Definitely someday," says the bilingual high school senior, whose mom is Honduran) to "Will you marry me?" (Sorry, he's not 18 until Dec. 28.) The Murray, Utah, native—whose self-titled debut hits Nov. 11—sat down with PEOPLE's Marisa Laudadio to answer everything you wanted to know about his pop-star life.
What are your plans for your 18th birthday?
BELLE, São Paulo, Brazil
I don't have any. It would be nice to be home and spend time with my family and friends. But it's so weird—I don't feel like I'm, like, growing up.
If you weren't pursuing music, what would you do?
TARYN, San Francisco
College is something I've been looking into. You need backup, because music doesn't always last forever. I've always been interested in EMT or doctor stuff. But when you're a teenager, you change your mind all the time, so we'll see what I'm thinking in a couple years.
What's the biggest trouble you've ever got in?
BRENDA, Fort Worth, Tex.
When I was little, my sister and I would escape from the yard, go to the lake by our house and catch ducks. So my parents built a fence, but we found a hole, made it bigger and escaped through it. Our curiosity got the best of us.
Will you ever collaborate with a rapper?
MAURICE J., Darlington, S.C.
If it's the right song, lyric and rapper, why not? I've always liked Missy Elliott. She's not afraid to be different and is really creative. Your parents [mom Lupe, 42, and dad Jeff, 47] did a great job raising you. What's the best thing you've learned from them?
PATY MORALES New Haven, Conn.
To always remember what's important in life, share your talents with others and help out someone who might not have the opportunities you do.
Do you and Idol
winner David Cook keep in touch?
LUCY ADAMS, Grand Rapids, Mich.
I keep in touch with a bunch of the contestants. Cook texts me now and then. He's like my big brother. He gives me advice like, "Don't be afraid to try this" and "Always stand up for yourself." That's really cool.
What do you look for in a girl?
BROOKE, San Diego
Personality and thoughtfulness are important. And cool taste in music.
What was the funniest sign made for you during the Idol summer tour?
EMILY W. Colorado Springs, Colo.
I said, "I love lettuce" in an interview once—I love water, and lettuce is like crunchy water—and there was one sign that said, "Te amo nino de lechuga," which translates to "I love you lettuce boy" in Spanish.
What's your favorite ice cream flavor?
KASSY McELROY, Garden City, N.Y.
Vanilla. That probably suits me. [laughs] It's plain, sweet and simple. And if you want a little more flavor, you can add stuff to it, like chocolate or peanut butter!
To see video of David Archuleta answering more of your questions, go to people.com/archuleta