I’ve been getting a lot of stories about restrictions on women in colleges in times past, but so far this one from Gail Stephenson, of Baton Rouge, is my favorite:
“In the mid-’70s, girls’ dorms at Northwestern State had a curfew of midnight on school nights and 2 a.m. on weekends.
“One night my boyfriend Joe (now my husband of 38 years) and I lost track of time while watching the submarine races at Chaplain’s Lake. I arrived at the dorm a few minutes after midnight.
“Joe said, ‘Don’t worry — just say we had a flat tire.’
“The RA (resident assistant) unlocked the front door, let me in and instructed me to sign the ‘late book’ and write my excuse.
“As I was writing ‘flat tire,’ I glanced at the excuses listed for the previous two weeks.
“Someone must have strewn roofing tacks all over Natchitoches, because the reason given by every other girl was ‘flat tire.’”
Attention Mom, Dad!
Speaking of college restrictions, Donald Patt, of Baton Rouge, tells how it was in East Texas (“the buckle of the Bible Belt”) in the early-to-mid ’60s:
“I was on the work study program at Texarkana Community College, and worked in the office of the dean of students.
“We weren’t a very large junior college, but we did have a boys’ dorm and a girls’ dorm.
“In the girls’ dorm there were specific times when the girls had to be back in after going out for the evening. In order to leave the dorm, each girl had to sign out on a sheet listing the time she left, where she was going and with whom. Then she had to be in by a specific curfew time.
“One of my duties in the dean’s office was to collect the sign-out sheets from the girl’s dorm every month and mail a copy of each girl’s sheet home to their parents. Of course, there were no such sheets for the boys’ dorm.”
Former LSU cheerleader Bill Bankhead, of Baton Rouge, says Tookie Hendry “can now forgive Dickie Flowers,” the guy Tookie (in the Monday column) blamed for composing the LSU yell: “Hot boudin, cold cush-cush; come on, Tigers, push, push, push!”
Says Bill: “It was composed by the late Charles Byrne and the still-kicking Jeff Plauche in 1958. The other cheerleaders who helped them introduce the yell to the student body during that national football championship season were Bobbie Chachere Edwards, Toni Whittington Kinchen, Judy Rome Barber, Stephanie Campbell Jeansonne, the late Darrell Phillips and yours truly.
“By the way, the fact that the yell was composed then is written about in a great book titled ‘The Perfect Season’ by Bud Johnson, who was the LSU assistant sports information director in 1958.”
My first mistake
Our unpaid fact-checker Ronnie Stutes, after decades of searching, has finally found an error in this column. He points out that in the Monday column, where I told about meeting Vice President Richard Nixon after he had presented the Heisman Trophy to Billy Cannon, the year would have been 1960 (when I was a grad student at LSU), rather than 1959. Billy, of course, won the Heisman after the 1959 season.
Sara Brooks, a student at St. John Elementary School in Lake Charles, knows cabbage.
She grew a 26.4 pound cabbage to become the state winner in the National Bonnie Plants Cabbage Program, and will receive a $1,000 savings bond from Bonnie Plants towards education.
The plant company says 14,176 Louisiana students participated in the program — but doesn’t say what they did with all that cabbage.
Speaking of gardening, Judy B., who has “a well-earned reputation for a black thumb,” says, “The other day my daughter asked me if I wanted her to ‘bury’ my new plant for me. Of course, she meant ‘plant’...”
Special People Dept.
Blanche Sevenker, of Nouveau Marc Assisted Living in Kenner, formerly of Lincoln, Nebraska, celebrates her 98th birthday on Tuesday, Nov. 3.
The great escape
On a recent visit to Bertha Hinojosa’s English as a Second Language class at La Belle Aire Elementary, her husband Mariano asked a young lad from Honduras what he hoped to do while he was in school.
The boy quickly replied, “Get out of it.”
Billy Berger, of Belle Chasse, says reading about Willie Nelson playing golf in Brusly “brought to mind an interview I saw on TV many years ago.
“Willie had a four-hole ‘golf course’ built on his farm, and one of the holes ran right past the kitchen window.
“The reporter and Willie were sitting at the kitchen table when the reporter asked Willie, ‘What is the advantage of having your own golf course?’
“Without missing a beat, Willie replied, ‘Well, you see, I get to set par — and this hole right here is a par 17. Yesterday I birdied that sucker!’”
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.