Blanche Dubois famously said, “I have always depended on the kindness of strangers.” Make no mistake, in society, like everywhere else, deceit and duplicity run their crooked courses, and every year I’m forever grateful for angels who step forward out of nowhere.

“Rob” at CC’s on Johnston, who introduced himself just to say how much he liked The Advocate. Veteran retired Marine sergeant major and biker Doug Lyvere, who graciously allowed me to sign his flag to be left at the Vietnam Memorial in Washington, D.C. Jimmy King, who likes my take on Texas men (what’s not to like about Texas men?). Photographers and gentlemen Jay Faugot, who allowed me to get my pictures first, and Buffy Massey, who stepped into the breach when my computer crashed. The Advocate newspaper carrier who spotted vandals breaking into a River Ranch Tahoe and called the police early one morning.

Penny Spizale simply walked up one day at a country club golf tournament and told me I deserved a Pulitzer Prize. Actually, she said Nobel, but I’m pretty sure neither is coming my way anytime soon. No matter, her saying so was just as good. Grande dame Deanie Chesson and Brenda Toston, who both said I had true journalism skills. Ladies, if that’s all I ever get out of this, I can die a happy woman. And Clarice Burch, who let me know she and her husband talk over the columns.

I can’t get a man to do much, Clarice, but I can make him read society.

Being the nice guy day after day, night after night is the toughest job in the world, and I just wanted those souls to know I noticed. Because trust me, the Devil’s dressed up and he’s out there joyriding.

UL honors its own

The University of Louisiana at Lafayette favored architect Steve Oubre with its Outstanding Award. Oubre is principal and co-founder of Architects Southwest, a firm that focuses on new urbanism and campus planning and accepted his accolades with aplomb. Those turning out were legion, including former Gov. Kathleen Blanco, Gail Savoie, Sarah and Harold Schoeffler, Margaret Trahan, Shawn Wilson, Gordon Brooks, Charlie Triche, Eddie Cazayoux, Monica Mitchell, PR czar Aaron Martin, and a rock star-chic Angela Morrison.

Giving Thanks

United Way gave credit where credit was due at their Spirit of Giving Thank You Celebration hosted by publisher Cherry Fisher May. “It’s a celebration of our leadership givers who give $1,000 or more,” said online engagement manager Krista Richmond. “And to welcome the holiday season.” It welcomed the Polar Vortex as well, which arrived right on time, as did Peggy and Gene Fortier, John and Donna Wright, Tyson and Danielle Cromwell, Southern gentleman Robert Foard, events coordinator extraordinaire Mallory Dubus, and a fur-wrapped Sue Lein. Margaret Trahan did the honors, Joey’s did the best bar and buffet we can remember, and everyone loved touring the Tudor mansion. A man’s home truly is his castle at 416 Worth Ave.

Some social shopping

The Lafayette Art Association & Gallery presented its yearly Marché Noel, a pre-Santa reception featuring work by local artists. “We’ve just joined the Oil Center Merchant Association,” said Sara Parker, treasurer of the non-profit gallery. “If you have more galleries, you have more people coming to see them. We’re our own best customers.” Indeed they were, and on a chilly Friday night there was no shortage of guests, including board member Ellen Gill, Terry and Simone Palmer, jewelry artist Suzanne Juneau, Renee Richards, Jeanne Poulet and Mike and Diane Legnon. What we loved: Juneau’s calla lily earrings, Palmer’s sculptures and Mike Legnon’s manly black overcoat.

Triton holds royalty party

King Triton Troy Knight and Queen Kelly Ortego hosted members at a get-together on Renaud Road. White tablecloths and simple elegant centerpieces set the mood at Lafayette Receptions & Banquets while guests caught a break in the winter weather. The Bayou Boys played, so everyone stayed, including man-about-town Peter Piccione, Jonathan and AnnMarie Perrin, Craig Ortego, Bryan and Danielle Couvillion, Vivian and Jim Jeanmard, and always well-dressed Stacia and Jason Fontenot. What we loved: Kelly Ortego’s pageant queen smile, Cody Knight’s country music voice and those classy Triton cups — no flimsy plastic for this krewe. Triton’s theme this year is Viva Las Vegas.