Oprah has her "What I know for sure" segments on her show and a column in her magazine, "O," where she shares what she knows for sure and asks other famous folks to share what they know for sure.
She didn't ask me, but I also have my list of
"What I know for sure."
1. Poodles are the best dogs.
When someone asks me what kind of dogs I have, and I tell them I have poodles, I see the look of disappointment (or is it pity?) in their eyes.
Poodles get a bad rap.
It is probably because of their hair cut which makes them look like lightweights (and actually there is a reason why poodles are cut that way - and here it is). Or perhaps because some have been bred to be small arm candy for poor pet owners, who carry them around and permit them to be yappy and piddly.
But the truth of the matter is, poodles exemplify everything you would want in a dog. They are the smartest breed, they are devoted companions, and they don't shed.
And they can guard you like the best of them.
2. "The Hurt Locker" will win the Academy Award this year for Best Picture and its director, Kathryn Bigelow, will win for Best Director, thus becoming the first woman ever to win a Best Director Award.
Funny that I should say that, too, since I am more of a "Love, Actually" type than a war movie lover. But "The Hurt Locker" is an original, compelling take on the Iraq War. It follows a group of men who are part of an elite bomb squad unit in a "you are there" way. The acting is superb and it is the most timely, provocative, and intense film to come along in a long time.
3. It really does rain in Seattle.
That may be a strange thing for me to have to state, but before I moved here from California, I really thought that the whole thing about how much it rained in Seattle was a Seattle-based conspiracy to keep Californians from moving here. Every single time I had visited in the past, the weather was fantastic, even in February. Well, after 15 straight days of rain, I give...
4. No one cares about figure skating anymore.
Oh, I hang in there a bit to see how some of the old favorites are doing. But TV doesn't even cover the events on mainstream channels anymore - you have to really look for them.
Now that Michelle Kwan is no longer competing, it is just not the same. Michelle paid her dues and should have won the gold at the Olympics on two different occasions. Both times she was beaten by two upstarts who had nothing going for them except one triple triple. When she lost to Tara Lipinski (who?) I remember Michelle, sitting in the "Kiss and Cry" area, turning to her coach and saying, "But I did seven triples."
Michelle, you were robbed and I miss you.
(And don't get me started on child actresses who win an Academy Award for their first performance. When a ten-year-old Tatum O'Neill beats Sylvia Sidney or an 11-year-old Anna Paquin beats Emma Thompson, something is very wrong.)
But I digress. My interest in skating could be piqued again if only Dick Button would return. Without him as commentator, it "ain't" the same. His dry comments dripped with understatement, like "Oh, dear, that was unfortunate," when someone would fall.
5. If you want to join a gym, join in March because no one will be there.
Whenever people make New Year's Resolutions to lose weight, they flock to the gym in January to sign up for gym memberships. The gyms are packed in January and possibly into February, but by March everyone has given up and the gyms are empty again.
6. British television is superior to American TV.
If it wasn't, we wouldn't be stealing so many of their ideas.
I can't believe how many television shows we have poached from the Brits. It started with "All in the Family," "Sanford and Son" and "Three's Company" and continued with "Who Wants to be a Millionaire?," "American Idol," "The Office," "Trading Spaces," "What Not to Wear," "Life on Mars," "America's Got Talent" and it goes on and on.
Here is a longer list.
And don't forget that all of the programs shown on Masterpiece Theatre are British.
Now Simon Cowell is leaving "American Idol" to bring over his own show - The X Factor,
and I am predicting now that it will outdo "American Idol" (I've seen it and it's a cracker!).
Yes, when in the U.K. you have to put up with the inevitable cricket match and some of their shows are to American taste probably the equivalent of watching paint dry, but overall, their programming is diverse, intelligent and high quality.
7. I should read a book instead of watching reality television.
So now I contradict myself.
I know I was just talking about intelligent and high quality programming, but give me an episode of The Real World, The Bachelor or Tough Love and I can't help myself.
8. When you go to a restaurant, they will try to seat you at the worst table.
Somebody has to sit there, I guess, but it's not going to be me.
Here is a tip: When you arrive at the restaurant, scan the room for server stations (and they are getting sneakier about this), busy walkways, entrances and exits and the kitchen, and select a table far from any of those distractions. You will thank me.
9. Everything is not on the Internet.
When I am at the information desk, I can't tell you how many times someone will ask a difficult question and then say, "Well, can't you look it up on the Internet?"
I will concede that since the advent of the Internet, librarians can certainly find the answers to many questions much more quickly than we used to, but if something is not free in "real life," it's not likely to be free on the Internet. There is a huge amount of information that is not available to the casual user of the Internet.
That is why Sno-Isle Libraries provides premium databases that include information that would not be free to the web surfer. There is everything from car repair information to newspapers from other countries to medical information to business data.
Check it out.
10. Libraries are good value for your tax dollars.
We all pay taxes for police and fire protection, but fortunately, most of us will never have to make use of those services. Likewise, we only interact with other city, county and state services, such as the Department of Licensing or City Hall sporadically. We pay for all of those services whether we need to make use of them or not.
But the library is open morning, afternoon and evening, some as many as 63 hours per week. If you come in, we welcome you and your family with free materials to meet a wealth of information needs, computers, and programs for children, teens and adults.
You can ask us anything. If you call or email us, a human being will respond immediately. And if it is the middle of the night, you can chat with a real live librarian or request that items be held for you through our web site.
If you just want a quiet place to study or a place to meet your neighbor, we are here.
Libraries are all about quality of life and the freedom to have access to the information you need.
And we are always happy to see you.
Now how many tax supported agencies can boast about that?
If you are not a regular library user, come in and see what all the excitement is about.
Well, those are the things I know for sure.
I am not Oprah, but now I invite you to share what you know for sure.