Gerald Moses offers this sports commentary:

“Florida’s baseball team came up with a stuffed owl to answer LSU’s ‘Rally Possum.’ But as the game wore on into Thursday morning, it became clear that the owl didn’t give a hoot.”

Mighty marsupials

Two final thoughts on a new name for the New Orleans Zephyrs:

Perry Snyder suggests “The Possums.” He explains, “What’s working for the Bengals just might be transferable to the pros. And should Mainieri’s boys of spring not make it to Omaha, there’ll be a surplus of stuffed possums for the New Orleans franchise to buy up at a deep discount.”

Sal Suer likes “Second-Liners.” He says, “What is more geared to New Orleans than the constant celebration I see in this area with second lines for almost anything. Wouldn’t it be nice to see fans celebrating winning with second lines?”

(Not bad, Sal, but do we want “second” in the name of a team whose goal is to finish first?)

Pretty good weekend

Dan Stein, of Baton Rouge, says, “Anytime someone asks me, ‘How was your weekend?’ I think back to the fall of 1984, when Brad Froman and I were in Los Angeles working on Tigervision coverage of the LSU-USC football game.

“We had Friday afternoon off, so we stood in line for nearly three hours and finally made it into the audience to see Johnny Carson’s ‘Tonight Show.’

“After Ed McMahon warmed up the audience with funny stories, Doc Severinsen’s band played the theme song and Ed announced the guests that night and said those so-familiar words, ‘And now...heeeres Johnny!’

“Johnny charmed us with his insight into politics, popular events, and celebrity gossip. Always funny, never mean. I don’t remember who the guests were that night, or even one word he said. I do remember the awe I felt 32 years ago, and still feel today.

“Our work assignment the next day was televising LSU’s sound thrashing of those arrogant Trojans, 23-3, in their own backyard.

“Now THAT was a pretty good weekend!”

Mad about ’maters

John O’Reilly, of Hammond, continues our discussion of the Texas songwriter Guy Clark:

“With the passing of Guy Clark and the talk of songs he wrote, one of my favorites is ‘Homegrown Tomatoes.’ The last two lines of the chorus are:

“‘Only two things that money can’t buy,

and that’s true love and homegrown tomatoes.’”

Bargain tickets

Diane Tridico Parker says, “My sister and I were going through our mother’s old pictures, and found two LSU ticket stubs from Sept. 19, 1981. Price of tickets was $11 each. Since they are stubs, we can’t identify the team LSU was playing.

“What a far cry from cost of tickets now!”

(The tickets were for the LSU-Oregon State game, which was evidently an interesting contest — the Tigers won 27-24.)

Days to remember

Lt. Col. Kathy Gibbs (U.S. Army Reserves, retired) tells of the different purposes of two holidays:

“Memorial Day is to remember those who died while fighting for what we have.

“Veterans Day is for those living veterans who served our country.”

Special People Dept.

Ray Parker, of Port Allen, celebrates her 96th birthday on Saturday, May 28.

Dora Ross, of Metairie, celebrates her 93rd birthday on Saturday, May 28.

Anne Bosche, of Gonzales, celebrates her 92nd birthday on Friday, May 27.

Johnnie L. Mills Sr., a former New Orleans resident now in St. Charles Parish, celebrates his 90th birthday Sunday, May 29, at a 2 p.m. party at the volunteers’ firehouse on Veterans Boulevard in Kenner. He is a World War II Navy veteran.

Amos and Helen Ezell, of Leesville, celebrate their 57th anniversary on Saturday, May 28.

Ed and Martha Schexnayder, of St. Amant, celebrate their 50th anniversary on Saturday, May 28.

That’s Mama’s line

“How come kids only remember the stupid stuff parents say?” asks Sarah Stravinksa, of Chestnut.

“I was driving with little David, and we got stuck behind someone who was not too interested in getting anywhere.

“Suddenly David yelled, ‘How about 45, grandma?’

“Then he looked at me and said, ‘That’s the limit!’

“He certainly was.”

Religious war

Algie Petrere tells of the little church where the pastor and the choir director had a long-running feud. Seems the two could just not get along.

Finally, one Sunday the pastor announced that he was resigning to take a post at another church.

He told the congregation, “Jesus led me here, and now Jesus is leading me away.”

And the choir director immediately led the singing of “What A Friend We Have In Jesus.”

Contacting Smiley

Write Smiley at He can also be reached by fax at (225) 388-0351 or mail at P.O. Box 588, Baton Rouge, LA 70821.