Nick Carrier, of Napoleonville, reminds me that I should never try to wind up a subject before my readers are through discussing it:

“Smiley, you stated that a story ‘might be the last of our milk delivery stories.’

“In the words of football analyst Lee Corso, ‘Not so fast!’

“In the early to mid-’50s, two of my friends, Philip ‘Phil Lou’ Landry and John ‘Putsie’ Flood, were visiting me.

“The milk truck pulled into the driveway, and the milkman dropped off the goods and proceeded to finish his route.

“Not paying attention, Philip and I suddenly realized that Putsie had vanished.

“Within minutes the frantic search was on — phones ringing and mothers hunting for the missing 5-or-6-year-old tot.

“Putsie was sighted by one of the residents. He had decided to tour Napoleonvile by hitching a ride on the huge rear step bumper of the milk truck.

“Living in a small town, the story circulated for quite some time. Many laughed.

“Putsie’s mother’s reaction wasn’t quite so humorous.”

The music man

One of the most popular groups in the Spanish Town Mardi Gras Parade is the Italian American Marching Club, courtly gents who pass out flowers, garters and kisses to female parade watchers.

There’s always a trailer with a band providing music for the marchers, and it’s always been led by Bobby Lonero.

Dolores Benedetto tells why Bobby wasn’t leading the band this year:

“Frank Arrigo just let us know on Monday that Bobby Lonero died Sunday night. He played the Mardi Gras Ball at Lake Sherwood Village on Friday, Feb. 8, but did not play for the Spanish Town parade, as he had a brain hemorrhage and was unresponsive on that Saturday morning.

“Bobby was a great musician, and kept Louis Prima alive for all of us. He will be missed.”

Half measures

Mention of the Italian American Marching Club reminds me of this put-down:

After her duties as a float judge at the Spanish Town Mardi Gras Parade, Lady Katherine came home telling me how much she enjoyed dancing with the marchers before the parade, as the judges walked by the floats checking them out.

She told me the Italian-American gents swept the female judges off their feet, and remarked about what handsome guys they were.

After it seemed to me she had stayed on this topic a bit too long, I reminded her of my Italian ancestry.

She replied (somewhat disdainfully, I thought), “Oh, but you’re only HALF Italian …”

Naming rights

After Ronnie Stutes wondered about the practice of naming winter storms, we heard from Carol:

“When I first heard of named winter storms, I emailed Channel 2. Ryan Davidson answered that it is a Weather Channel thing, not the National Weather Service.”

It’s Dan, darn it!

Dan Burkhalter, the Carencro Curmudgeon, was feeling especially curmudgeonly after noting that I called him “Don” in the Tuesday column.

I would claim a computer malfunction, but I’ll have to be honest and chalk it up to memory loss due to aging.

My apologies to you, Dan, and to Mrs. Burkmaster, too …

Help out Jaxon

A lad named Jaxon wrote (with excellent penmanship, by the way) to tell me that his third-grade class at Woodland Elementary in Gages Lake, Ill., is studying about the United States, and seeks information on Louisiana.

You can send postcards and information about weather, landmarks, wildlife, outdoor activities, etc., to:

Ms. K. Rudolph’s Class, Woodland Elementary West School, 17371 W. Gages Lake Road, Gages Lake, Ill., 60030.

Special People Dept.

  • Bertha Achord celebrates her 95th birthday Thursday.
  • On Thursday George and Roberta Kelly, of Denham Springs, celebrate their 62nd anniversary.
  • Theresa and Willie Morgan Jr., of Independence, celebrated their 62nd anniversary Sunday.
  • Charles and Mary Hulbert celebrate 54 years of marriage Thursday.

Short takes

A couple of brief comments on recent column items:

  • Regarding the use of big words when small ones will do, Pat McCarthy recalls a bumper sticker he saw in Denver in the ’60s: “ESCHEW OBFUSCATION.”
  • Regarding our tale of the lad who gave his younger brother his used gum, Alex “Sonny” Chapman, of Ville Platte, says, “The original ‘sugar free’ gum mentioned by Sam Rainey has an acronym: ‘ABC Gum: Already Been Chewed.’ ”

Too much information

Algie Petrere came across this tale:

The minister announced that admission to a church social event would be $6 per person. “However, if you’re over 65,” he said, “the price will be only $5.50.”

From the back of the congregation, a woman’s voice rang out, “Do you really think I’d give you that information for only 50 cents?”

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.