How do you feel about getting advice?
If unasked for and given at an improper time, it can be frustrating. If it is given with the person's best interest at heart, it can be really welcome.
I have a list of 21 pieces of worthwhile advice that gave me food for thought. You might like to hear them, too. And if you don't want to hear some of them, just skip over them. I cannot even tell you from where I got this information. It came by e-mail some time ago and the top sheet is now gone.
1. Give people more than they expect and do it cheerfully.
2. Marry a man/woman you love to talk to. As you get older, their conversational skills will be as important as any other.
3. Don't believe all you hear, spend all you have or sleep all you want.
4. When you say, "I love you," mean it.
5. When you say, "I'm sorry," look the person in the eye.
6. Be engaged at least six months before you get married.
7. Believe in love at first sight.
8. Never laugh at anyone's dream. People who don't have dreams don't have much.
9. Love deeply and passionately. You might get hurt, but it is the only way to live completely.
10. In disagreements, fight fairly. No name calling.
11. Don't judge people by their relatives.
12. Talk slowly but think quickly.
13. When someone asks a question you don't want to answer, smile and ask "Why do you want to know?"
14. Remember that great love and great achievements involve great risk.
15. Say "bless you" when you hear someone sneeze.
16. When you lose, don't lose the lesson.
17. Remember the three R's: Respect for self; respect for others; and responsibility for all your actions.
18. Don't let a little dispute injure a great friendship.
19. When you realize you've made a mistake, take immediate steps to correct it.
20. Smile when picking up the telephone. The caller will hear it in your voice.
21. Spend some time alone.
Now I am going to offer you some stuff you might not know, didn't know you didn't know or didn't care that you didn't know. This came in an e-mail from my Smithfield High School classmate Shirley Omaits Stewart.
-- Men can read smaller print than women can; women can hear better.
-- Coca-Cola originally was green in color.
-- It is impossible to lick your elbow. And I can see some of you trying to do this right now. It is told that 75 percent will try.
-- The state with the highest percentage of people who walk to work is Alaska.
-- The percentage of Africa that is wilderness is 2.8 percent.
-- The percentage of North America that is wilderness is 3.8 percent.
-- The cost of raising a medium-size dog to the age of 11 is $16,400.
-- The average number of people airborne over the United States in any given hour is 61,000.
-- Intelligent people have more zinc and copper in their hair.
-- The first novel ever written on a typewriter was Tom Sawyer.
-- The San Francisco cable cars are the only mobile national monuments.
-- Each king in a deck of playing cards represents a great king from history; Spades is David, hearts is Charlemagne, clubs is Alexander the great and diamonds is Julius Caesar.
-- If a statue in the park of a person on a horse has both front legs in the air, the person died in battle. If the horse has one front let in the air, the person died because of wounds received in battle. If the horse has all four legs on the ground, the person died of natural causes.
-- Only two people signed the Declaration of Independence on July 4: John Hancock and Charles Thomson. Most of the rest signed on Aug. 2, but the last signature wasn't added until five years later.
-- Half of all Americans live within 50 miles of their birthplace.
-- Most boat owners name their boats, and the most popular name is Obsession.
-- What do bulletproof vests, fire escapes, windshield wipers and laser printers have in common? All were invented by women.
-- Honey is the only food that doesn't spoil.
-- In English pubs, ale was ordered by pints and quarts. So in old England, when customers got unruly, the bartender would yell at them, "Mind your pints and quarts and settle down." That is where the phrase "mind your P's and Q's" came from.
-- Many years ago in England, pub frequenters had a whistle baked into the rim or handle of their ceramic cups. When they needed a refill, they used the whistle to get service. "Wet your whistle" is the phrase inspired by this practice.
-- In Shakespeare's time, mattresses were secured on bed frames by ropes. When you pulled on the ropes, the mattress tightened, making the bed firmer to sleep on. Hence the phrase "Good night, sleep tight."
And I will use that phrase to end this column right now, even though you are probably reading this in early morning.
(McCoy, a resident of Smithfield, is food editor and a staff columnist for the Herald-Star and The Weirton Daily Times. She can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.)