Kurt Weilbaecher, of Covington, shares this holiday story:

“When my last two boys were little, they loved two things, Christmas and ‘Star Wars.’ They would live under the tree … playing, sleeping and changing the decorations almost every day.

“During the ’70s, the Christmas party was at our house, so I proceeded to sit the boys down and give them my ‘you better behave’ speech. I told them we had many older aunts and uncles who did not have children, so they needed to be polite and respectful. They promised!

“The family started to arrive, then someone yelled, ‘That is a sacrilege! They are just hooligans! Where are their parents?’

“It seems the boys had surrounded the manger with Star Wars storm troopers, and had arrested and hung the shepherd from the tree.

“They explained they were playing a game, protecting Mary and Joseph.”

Another Southern Lee

Betty Swearingen Marks offers this modest proposal about the New Orleans statue controversy:

“If Robert E. Lee must come down, perhaps Harper Lee (author of the great Southern novel, ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’) could take his place. She would appeal to all sides, and best of all it would still be Lee Circle.”

Mincemeat and more

Harriet St.Amant gets in on our mincemeat discussion:

“Many years ago, my folks held a family Thanksgiving dinner, and an uncle who was a committed teetotaler called himself a mincemeat pie aficionado.

“I made the pie that year. Just a jar of plain old NoneSuch … with the addition of one-fourth cup each of brandy, rum and bourbon to rinse out the jar and get stirred into the rest.

“Uncle Ronnie declared it the best mincemeat pie he’d ever eaten!”

Meaty topic

Joe F. Cannon says, “Years ago my dad told of complaining in a northwest Arkansas cafe that there was no meat in his sandwich. The waitress responded, ‘Maybe you bit past it.’”

Take the cake!

Richard Fossey offers this information about the seasonal fruitcake:

“First, it is not true that all fruitcake bakeries closed 50 years ago, and the fruitcakes we are still receiving are part of a huge re-gifting cycle. The bakeries are still open, and although the fruitcake you receive may taste like it’s 50 years old, it’s probably fresh.

“Second, a scientific study was conducted several years ago to identify the best thing to give as a Christmas present. Fruitcakes ranked dead last, slightly below receiving no Christmas present at all.”

Thank-you note

Will Dujmas thanks the Baton Rouge Police Mounted Division for coming to the St. Jean Vianney Boy Scout meet:

“Five officers and two horses showed up and wowed the kids with some pretty fun demonstrations.

“All the officers were great and very informative, and I know all the kids had a blast.

“It’s nice to see the police out doing things like this and relating to the community, young kids in particular.”

Special People Dept.

— Naomi Flowers celebrates her 101st birthday on Tuesday, Dec. 22.

— Mattie Jarrell celebrates her 98th birthday Friday, Dec. 25.

— Mary Maxwell, of Liberty, Mississippi, celebrates her 97th birthday Dec. 30.

— Bert Stolier celebrated his 97th birthday Dec. 12. A Marine veteran of World War II, his service lasted from Pearl Harbor to Tokyo Bay. He is a volunteer at the National World War II Museum in New Orleans and a member of the Speakers Bureau A-Team.

— Ellis V. Rogillio Sr. celebrates his 94th birthday Wednesday, Dec. 23. He is a World War II veteran.

— Katie Anton, of Amber Terrace Assisted Living in Baton Rouge, celebrates her 90th birthday Dec. 30.

— Betsy and Ben Alsip celebrate their 69th anniversary Wednesday, Dec. 22.

— Mack and Helen Bruner, of St. Amant, celebrate their 67th anniversary Saturday, Dec. 26.

— D.L. and Joyce Starns, of Denham Springs, celebrate their 59th anniversary Monday, Dec. 21.

— Bob and Stannie Luker celebrated 55 years of marriage Saturday, Dec. 19.

That’s a wrap!

I guess you could call it a Christmas wrap …

I’ll be wrapping up my vacation time the rest of this year (I know, vacation from WHAT?).

Lady Katherine and I will spend the holidays at Bubba’s Exxon, Motel and Bait Shop in Back Brusly.

As you might recall, our autumn vacation was cut short when Bubba lost his electric bill payment in a bourre game. All is well now, and we look forward to some relaxing times in his newly-renovated Nutria Nook Lounge. (It suffered some structural damage when contestants in the Brusly Open Arm-Wrestling Championship event got a bit testy after a disputed match.)

Bubba says his chef, Large Marge, has outdone herself with her annual holiday feast. This year the main entree will be her creation “allinutum,” which is a roasted alligator stuffed with a nutria which is in turn stuffed with a possum.

See you in January …

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.