Russ Wise, of LaPlace, echoes a thought I’ve had on Saturday afternoons in the fall:

“Fella writes in Saturday’s letters to the editor that The Advocate got it wrong when it counted Louisiana’s colleges, but I’m not sure I believe him either.

“In a long list of numbers he said that from sea to shining sea there are 718 public colleges and universities.

“But on any given Saturday in October there are more collegiate football games than that on ESPN alone!”

About time

“Changing the clocks always confuses me,” says Faye Hoffman Talbot, of Jackson.

“After dinner Saturday night I changed the clocks in the cars and then changed the ones in the house.

“At 10 p.m. when the news didn’t come on, I realized it was really 9 p.m.

“I got more confused because the clock in my bedroom changes itself. When I left the 10 p.m. den, I entered my 9 p.m. bedroom. I was stepping back in time.

“Remind me, why do we need to change the clocks two times a year?”

(It’s so we can get home from work while it’s still daylight and do all that yard work we’ve been putting off all winter because it’s dark when we get home. At least that’s how it works at my house...)

Time flies...

Glenn Giro, of Denham Springs, says, “After this last episode of rain, I heard a guy on the Weather Channel refer to it as a ‘once-in-a-thousand-years’ event.

“Hmmm, I wonder which Indian weatherman/medicine man’s well-kept records from the year 1016 onward this guy was able to access.

“How many ‘once-in-a-century’ floods have we had in the last 20 years?”

Now that’s a threat!

Earl C. Johnson, of Baton Rouge, has one for our collection of colorful sayings:

“In the early ’50s I was a young kid. When I acted up, my mother would say she was going to ‘scob my knob.’”

The music man

I got the sad news from Mike Gauthier, of Thibodaux: our mutual buddy Gibbens Robichaux has died at 85.

As Mike says, “He played the organ (beautifully) at St. Joseph Co-Cathedral in Thibodaux for over 50 years. A raconteur and a gifted writer and history buff, he was one of the colorful members of the great collage of characters living in the Thibodaux area.”

I last saw Gibbens in August, when he invited me down for the opening of the Lanny D. Ledet Culinary Arts Building at Nicholls State’s Chef John Folse Culinary Institute. Previously I had gone with him to visit the New Orleans Saints training camp when it was in Thibodaux. He was proud of his town, and loved to show off its attractions.

After the ceremony at Nicholls, over a fried catfish lunch, he told me stories of the 400 weddings and 1,500 funerals at which he had played the organ.

He also wrote a Chamber of Commerce column for the local paper, The Daily Comet, and attended several conferences of the National Society of Newspaper Columnists. He charmed everyone there with his jovial nature and Cajun accent. And if there was a piano in the hotel where we met, you could be sure Gibbens was there tinkling the ivories.

I was fortunate to know him and call him my friend.

Special People Dept.

Evelyn Berger, of St. Francisville, celebrates her 96th birthday on Tuesday, March 15.

Kitty Munson Dammon, of Alexandria, celebrates her 94th birthday on Tuesday, March 15.

Theresa Herrington celebrated her 91st birthday on Monday, March 14.

Glorianne Eads, of Burlington, Iowa, celebrates her 90th birthday on Tuesday, March 15. (Daughter-in-law Melanie Eads says, “She loves your column when she comes to visit,” which assures her a birthday mention.)

Thought for the Day

From Bo Bienvenu, of Prairieville: “I think after the circus called a special session, the legislators should consider an old Groucho Marx saying, ‘I don’t care to belong to a club that accepts people like me as members.’”

Better be there

Marsha R. offers this example of “how to ensure your membership attends a networking event.”

She found in our “Business Briefs” column a notice of a business organization’s meeting that announced, “Cost: $25 members; $35 nonmembers and no-shows.”

On their own

Jacob Scardina, of Baton Rouge, adds to our tales of canned meat products:

“Many years ago a friend and I were fishing in a canal near Chauvin.

“I was dipping potted meat from a can with a cracker, and my friend was pulling Vienna sausages out with his fingers, when another fisherman pulled up near us.

“He said, ‘Lordy, y’all’s wives must be mad at y’all. I ain’t seen nobody eating potted meat and Vienna sausages in years!’”

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.