My first anime was My Neighbor Totoro which was shown to me by a student teacher from Japan, it was because of her and the things she taught our class that sparked my interest in Japanese culture. Growing up I liked Pokemon, Sailor Moon, and DBZ, although it didn't register to me that these were 'anime' until I was older. I've now been watching anime for over 15 years.
I really dig robots and sentient mecha and the like, I have a strange connection to robot characters. Magical girls, josei, and mindfucks are my favorite.
I know enough Japanese to be able to watch kids shows without subtitles. At one point I was serious about learning the language, but these days I simply don't have the time and energy to study and just let myself absorb it naturally.