Our mention of grits in the Thursday column reminded Russ Wise, of LaPlace, of a hoax from his radio days:
“I was the news director (heck, I was the entire news department) at WTIX in New Orleans. Ed Clancy was the morning man and general comic-in-residence.
“As all good radio people often did (and a handful of newspaper writers too), we decided to borrow an idea from someone else — the BBC. A few years earlier it had broadcast a report on Italy’s bumper spaghetti crop. We decided to cover the agricultural disaster that resulted from a harsher than usual winter in the desolate area above Alexandria.
“We even recruited then-Agricultural Commissioner Bob Odom, who confirmed in an exclusive interview that the grits bushes has been pretty much wiped out, and grits farmers were going to be in trouble. Odom promised to seek a federal disaster declaration, but with a Republican in the White House he didn’t expect it to be approved.
“The story caused a sensation when we broke it in early April, but as far as I know no one else spotted it — not even the BBC.”
A singular view
John LaCarna comments on Tom DiNapoli’s views on grits:
“Far be it for me to contradict the LSU professor who claims that ‘grits’ is plural, but all cooks I know down here call out, ‘The grits is ready.’”
It could be worse
Bill Wade says this about Tony Falterman’s Thursday tale of writing a note to help him remember but forgetting where he put the note:
“At least he remembered writing the note.”
This report from James Minton means I can’t make any more lame jokes about seeing a buddy’s picture in the post office:
“Saw a postal worker posting some papers in the display case in my post office lobby, and I asked if they got a new shipment of wanted posters. She said word came down from on high several years ago not to put wanted posters on the wall.
“J. Edgar Hoover would be aghast, don’t you think?”
Love and laughter
After mentioning the use of “K” to end texts, I heard from Laura Robertson, of Pine Grove:
“I learned a lesson about Facebook. The letters ‘LOL’ were used often, and I assumed it meant ‘lots of love.’ I was informed that it meant ‘laugh out loud!’ I realized I had often used it inappropriately. A friend more my age said she liked my translation better.
“Maybe we older ones should start our own ‘e-language.’”
Chapman Morgan, of Santa Maria, California, describes his school days in Central:
“Each class had a cloakroom where we hung our coats and jackets, and placed our brown-bag lunches on a shelf until noon recess.
“I can still taste the nasty Spam sandwiches we had to put up with during the war years. But I dearly loved the condensed milk and vanilla extract spread on white bread.”
Looking for stuff
Toni Brantley says the West Baton Rouge Museum, for an exhibit, seeks to borrow items relating to Cohn High School, the only high school for African-American students in West Baton Rouge Parish, which opened in 1949 and closed in 1969, when high schools in the parish were integrated.
The items can include photos, varsity jackets, trophies, prom dresses, yearbooks, etc. Go to email@example.com.
Special People Dept.
Helen Wyble, of Abbeville, celebrated her 98th birthday on Wednesday, Jan. 6.
Rocco F. Ruggiero celebrated his 95th birthday on Wednesday, Jan. 6. He is a World War II Army combat veteran, serving in the Pacific.
Lucy L. Kadair celebrates her 94th birthday on Sunday, Jan. 10.
Wilbert Terry, of Slidell, celebrated his 93rd birthday on Wednesday, Jan. 6. He is a World War II veteran.
T. Charles and Audrey Daigle, of Paincourtville, celebrate their 63rd anniversary on Sunday, Jan. 10.
A few more memorable insults before we wrap up the whole sordid business:
From Jim Pitchford, of Baton Rouge: One of the favorites my brother Tom used was “He was born lazy and then got tired.”
From Bo Bienvenu, of Prairieville: “Speaking of insults based on looks, I heard a former co-worker tell a young lady, ‘It looks like you got your wig and your mop mixed up.’”
And another post from Chapman Morgan, of Santa Maria, California: “Here is my favorite insult: ‘He/she is so dumb he/she thinks Eartha Kitt is some kind of gardening tool.’”
Write Smiley at Smiley@theadvocate.com. He can also be reached by fax at (225) 388-0351 or mail at P.O. Box 588, Baton Rouge, LA 70821.