Ernie Gremillion, of Baton Rouge, is the kind of thoughtful husband who makes trouble for the rest of us:

“Lately when my wife goes grocery shopping and I have beer on the list, instead of getting my regular brand, she buys me Dos Equis. She won’t say why she switches, but I think it’s because she doesn’t think I’m interesting enough (the guy in the Dos Equis commercials is ‘the most interesting man in the world’).

“I was able to get a life-size cutout of him I saw in a store display and surprise her at her birthday breakfast with the cutout and a birthday message from him.”

The message, in a balloon over the bearded guy’s head, said, “I don’t always wish women happy birthday, but when I do, it’s Margaret Gremillion. Stay lovely, my friend!”

Word mishaps

You folks seem to be having a good time recalling misused words:

— Bo Bienvenu, of Prairieville, says, “My wife reminded me of a couple from my father-in-law. Years ago he called a late show host ‘Dick Cravat.’ But he is most famous in the family for calling white zinfandel wine ‘white zucchini.’”

— Dudley Lehew, of Marrero, says, “I was in the hospital during Christmas 1960 when I asked my nurse what she enjoyed most about the season. ‘I like to watch the children put the ointments on the tree,’ she replied.”

— Sue Conran says, “When we flew to Indianapolis by way of Houston, we had a long layover at the airport. My husband, Richard, was telling a friend about this and said, ‘We had a three-hour layover at Hobby Lobby!’

“When I managed to stop laughing, I told him they had changed the name from Houston Hobby to George Bush. He was a good sport about it.”

— Cynthia R. Riché says, “When my husband and I went to Ireland, upon arrival we hired a guide. When he asked what we wanted to see, my husband replied, ‘She wants to kiss the Baloney Stone.’ Apologies to the Irish.”

— Mariano Hinojosa, of Baton Rouge, says, “When my daughter Mia was 5 she became fascinated with traffic slowdowns on both sides of the interstate.

“We told her cars had to slow down, usually because of an accident, causing traffic flow to ‘bottle up.’ And drivers coming from the other direction would slow down to see the wrecks. We called this ‘rubber-necking.’

“Afterwards, Mia called all drivers slowing down to get a better look at a wreck ‘bottle-neckers.’”

Hedge fun

We heard from several folks after a reader asked about hedges in Tiger Stadium:

— Jerry Price, “an old Tiger living in Las Vegas,” says, “There were hedges around the end zones. They were removed to add seats at field level. I remember them well.”

— Carol Nicholson says the book “Historic Photos of LSU Football” by Mark E. Martin and Barry Cowan shows hedges in 1941 and 1951:

“In the 1958 photo, the hedges had been removed.”

— Bill Stracener says when he was a Boy Scout in 1941 or so, he was given the task of handling the electrical cord for radio broadcaster John Ferguson’s microphone (John did sidelines reports in Tiger Stadium before he moved up to the press box.)

Bill says two of his memories of that time involved getting tangled up in the hedges on the east side as he tried to move the cord around — and almost getting run over by LSU’s great running back Steve Van Buren.

Special People Dept.

— Leon Miletello, of Maringouin, celebrates his 101st birthday on Tuesday, Sept. 29.

— Anna Blanchard Gleason celebrates her 100th birthday on Tuesday, Sept. 29. A teacher for 51 years, she lost her home in Chalmette after Hurricane Katrina, and now lives in Metairie.

— Marie Yarbrough, of The Haven assisted living in Baton Rouge, celebrates her 94th birthday on Tuesday, Sept. 29.

— On Monday, Sept. 28, John Torbert celebrated his 91st birthday. He is a World War II veteran, having served in Italy.

— Edith Holley celebrated her 90th birthday on Monday, Sept. 28.

Taking the cake

“On the subject of bringing food to the home of a deceased person,” says Juanita Bahlinger, “my sister-in-law, Martha Haase, had baked a cake for just that purpose.

“It was sitting on the kitchen table waiting to be delivered. Her sons came in from Catholic High, saw the cake, grabbed a knife and fork and really enjoyed it.

“Martha must have given them quite a tongue lashing. Anytime after that when they came in and saw a cake, they would ask, ‘Who died?’”


Driving home from judging a chili cook-off in Zachary (yeah, I know, tough job...) Saturday afternoon, I realized I was not far from the Krispy Kreme doughnut factory at Plank and Hollywood.

In need of something sweet after all that chili, I dropped by and asked for two glazed doughnuts — and a Diet Coke.

As I drove away the absurdity of my order hit me, and I had a good laugh at myself.

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.