Dear Smiley: The item about a small town and how everyone looks after each other brought this story to mind:

Soon after my son, Chase, got his driver’s license, he was driving my car when it stalled on the Pineville Expressway.

He pulled over on an off-ramp, and before he could even call anyone for help, my husband Tom called him and said, “Hey, are you on the side of the road?”

Tom had gotten two calls from people going in the opposite direction.

If my son didn’t realize he lived in a small town before that day, he did then.



Cheerful cheers

Dear Smiley: With football season approaching, let us recall a cheer from the 1950s that could only have originated in Louisiana:

“Our team is red hot.

Your team is all shot.

Our team is on the ball.

Your team needs Hadacol.”

Then there was a 1960s cheer I heard only in Port Allen:

“How you like your oysters? Raw, raw, raw!

How you like your cabbage? In slaw, slaw, slaw!

How you like your pizza? With meat, meat, meat!

How you like your (name of opposing team’s mascot)?

Beat, beat, beat!”



Playing with Playboy

Dear Smiley: Your story (in the Wednesday column) on creative uses for Playboy centerfolds reminds me that quite a few times, the conductor of our orchestra would turn the page in his score only to find the centerfold planted there.

The orchestra played on, oblivious, while the conductor tried to keep a straight face while improvising his baton waving and attempting to uncover the sheet music.

The centerfold lady was already uncovered.



Playing with pests

Dear Smiley: Even if you are on “Do Not Call” lists, telemarketing calls can slip through.

Best way to avoid them is not to answer the phone unless caller ID shows someone you know!

Although I do wonder if your dear readers are making a sport of it — in that case, I support them wholeheartedly.



Color bind

Dear Smiley: At the TSA checkpoint at the Las Vegas airport, the agent told me the colors I was wearing were not allowed in the airport.

I was wearing a LSU purple and gold golf shirt.

I asked what colors were approved: he said crimson and white.

I wonder who’s his favorite team?


Baton Rouge

Dear Larry: Probably the UL-Lafayette Ragin’ Cajuns.

Cajun mittens

Dear Smiley: As kids growing up in south Louisiana, we never owned gloves. When it got really cold and we were playing outside (where else?), some of us would put cotton socks on our hands, kinda like mittens but with no thumb.

Fast forward to 1974. My cousin from Lafayette, myself and a pal were backpacking at Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado.

We’re hiking up a trail that follows a cascading stream to the campsite. There were 3-inch-long icicles on trees that had fallen across the stream.

We came upon hikers heading down from the campsite, and asked how far was it.

After telling us, one of the hikers asked incredulously why were we wearing socks on our hands.

To which we all replied, “Mais, to keep our hands warm.”

Those hikers are probably still scratching their heads.


Ville Platte

Hard times, hard gum

Dear Smiley: My wife’s father was postmaster in Rayville for many years, and her grandfather had been a pastor there.

Before that, he pastored a small church in Mississippi when times were tough. Candy was a luxury, and there was not much money for frivolous items.

He was paid a small salary, with some members tithing eggs, vegetables and possibly some chicken, hogs or beef.

As pastor, part of his job was to make sure the church was cleaned each week.

One week, two of his daughters were cleaning up, removing the gum from under the wooden pews, when the older was heard to tell the younger, “Remember, chew and spit, chew and spit.”

That generation is no longer with us, but they were very resourceful.


Columbia, Tennessee

Cat days of summer

Dear Smiley: It has turned out to be a long, hot summer.

How hot is it? It is so hot that our cat, Mary Ann, decided it was too hot to go outside.

So to keep herself from getting bored, she managed to get inside the linen closet, burrow around and knock down most of the towels to the floor.

Hope it cools off soon. Whew!


Baton Rouge

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.