Smiley: Foxy paper thieves _lowres

Advocate photo by Glenn Holden -- Rick and Rene Nevils and their neighbors in Stanford Place, located in Baton Rouge near the LSU Lakes, began noticing that their copies of The Advocate weren’t showing up in the mornings. A family of foxes were making off with the papers. Rick says the foxes are tearing up the papers for nesting material inside the den. The Advocate circulation department is working on a solution to the delivery problem.

On Friday I told of a lady in Vacherie who went out to get her newspaper and found an alligator sunning himself alongside it.

It seems gators aren’t the only critters fond of the written word.

Rick and Rene Nevils and their neighbors in Stanford Place, near the LSU Lakes, noticed that their Advocates weren’t showing up in the mornings.

“Our papers, and five or six other neighbors’ papers, were missing so often that we started looking for the thief,” says Rick.

They found the culprits in nearby Stanford Oaks, in a den under, appropriately enough, a big oak tree. Seems a family of foxes were making off with the papers.

“There were about 15 papers in front of the den, and no telling how many inside.”

He figured the foxes were foraging around the neighborhood at night, and on their way back to the den at daybreak were stopping to pick up some freshly-delivered papers.

Rick called Wildlife & Fisheries and Animal Control, and says after meeting with the wildlife experts they agreed the best thing to do was to leave the foxes alone.

“They don’t call them wily for nothing,” he says. “If you trap one fox, the others get wise, and you’ll never catch another one. And we didn’t want to catch a father or mother fox and break up the family if there were young ones to care for.”

He also contacted The Advocate circulation department. District manager Glenn Holden, who lives near the den, came out and took a photo of an Advocate at the entrance to the den. Glenn looked inside and saw about 25 more papers. He also found his wife’s missing shoe!

The circulation people are pondering a solution to the delivery problem.

Rick says the foxes are no doubt tearing up the papers for nesting material.

“But,” he adds, “I’ll bet they read your column before they tear up the paper. They say foxes are smart...”

About boots

“You can tell I am not from here,” says Judy B. “I read the column about white rubber boots and I have no idea what you are talking about. Could you please enlighten us who are not from here?”

Happy to do it, Judy. White rubber boots have long been worn by shrimpers in coastal Louisiana.

Their popularity in south Louisiana spread far beyond the shrimp boats, and led to them being called “Cajun Reeboks” or “Pierre Part Reeboks” (the iconic Pierre Part Store is a major source for the boots).

Wear them with bib overalls and an LSU (or UL-Lafayette) baseball cap, and no one will question your Cajun bona fides.

Contact sport

Chick St. Germaine, of Harahan, says our recent golf stories remind him that golf can be a dangerous game:

“In about 1985 we were playing in a D.H. Holmes department store golf tournament at Colonial Country Club in Harahan.

“On the 10th hole Don Jagot, manager of the Oakwood Holmes store, was on the green waiting to putt. Wayne Bruno, manager of the Lake Forest Holmes, was hitting to the green, and called out ‘Don!’ as his ball headed for Don’s head. The ball hit Don above the eye. It took seven stitches to close the wound. They are still friends.”

Iron man

Speaking of sports, Dudley Lehew, of Denham Springs, says, “Your mention of two-way 60-minute football players in the ’40s reminds me of my late father, J.D. Lehew, a Texas minor league pitcher 100 years ago.

“There were no relief pitchers back then, and the pitcher was in the game until the end, win or lose.

“I once read a newspaper clipping, now lost, that reported him pitching a 22-inning game in a 2-1 loss.

“How he developed his pitching arm is equally impressive:

“He came from a large country family, and it was Dad’s responsibility to sometimes help put meat on the supper table. He did so by knocking squirrels out of trees with rocks!”

Thank-you note

“The Office of Motor Vehicles did an incredible job getting my antique, out-of-state Chrysler registered,” says Sissy Albertine.

“The number given to me was stamped 8:23, and I had the registration and license plate in hand at 9:01 — even after driving to a second OMV building for part of the process.

“I’d like to commend them on a job well done!”

Special People Dept.

On Friday, June 26, Haydee Waters of New Roads, formerly of New Orleans and Galveston, celebrated her 102nd birthday with family and friends.

Takes the cake

Linda Delferes tells of a post-birthday party event:

“Amazingly, more of the birthday cake was missing this morning than was there when we all went to bed last night.

“Grandson says to PawPaw, ‘PawPaw, you must have been sleep-eating.’”

One-stop shopping

Marsha R. says, “We were discussing the admonition ‘Don’t go to the hardware store for milk’ when my friend Gwen said she was in Goodwood Hardware recently and heard this announcement: ‘We need a clerk to come to Intimate Apparel.’

“They probably have milk, too.”

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.