Dear Smiley: Your contributors' notes about ways to prep chicken brought back a memory of the early '60s, when I administered a senior citizens' program for Catholic Charities.
We would always recognize outstanding senior citizens of the year with an auspicious annual function.
When I met with my board to prepare for the big gathering, the "seasoned citizen" members made this motion, dutifully following Robert's Rules of Order:
"Whereas, we always have to save money by ordering a chicken meal…Now, therefore we, the Members of this Board, do solemnly proclaim that CHICKEN will not be an entree for the Senior Citizens' Award Luncheon!"
The motion passed with flying colors! We subsequently made a super deal with the hotel for VEAL as the entree — using senior citizen discounts!
Dear Smiley: Because Louis Toussant and I both spent our childhoods on plantations and were almost the same age, we had a lot in common. We told stories about childhood "hard times" to the crews working on our jobs. Some they believed, some not so much.
I told Louis once that I could always tell when we were going to have chicken for supper. When I got off the school bus at home, if there were chicken feathers on the road, it was "chicken for supper."
Louis, in turn, told me they never had chicken except for very special occasions, and that until he was 18 years old, he thought a chicken looked like a snake.
You guessed it — all he ever got was the neck.
Wearing of the green
Dear Smiley: Another shoe story:
When I was in ninth grade at Baton Rouge Junior High, I bought a pair of white suede Hush Puppies to wear to school. I was totally clueless about the care required for such shoes, and they shortly became two-toned: white on top transitioning to grass green on the sides.
But before that, on the first day I wore them to school my classmate Ray Burton gently teased me by dubbing them my "cool shoes."
In the short time that the shoes remained presentable enough for anything other than mowing the lawn, Ray would invariably and smilingly comment, to my embarrassment, whenever I wore them.
In retrospect, being a socially awkward adolescent dork wasn't the worse thing that could have happened; it prepared me for a later career in engineering.
RON SAMMONDS JR.
The turning point
Dear Smiley: Growing up in "Back Vacherie" in the 1940s and 1950s, Saturday was cowboy movies at the "picture show" (movie theater for today's generation).
As the crooks were chasing the stagecoach, the wheels appeared to be turning backwards. I know it's an optical illusion, which they even named the "stagecoach wheel effect" or "wagon wheel effect."
As I watch auto commercials on TV and vehicles in movies today, the wheels still appear to be turning backwards.
That's my pet peeve — we can send a man to the moon, but we can't figure out how to resolve this issue.
Am I the only one that this bothers? By the way, I still love to watch my cowboys in black and white on cable, even if the wheels are turning backwards. Always a country kid at heart!
Stand by your brand
Dear Smiley: A story in a recent Advocate was about California police finding two calves with hooves tied, stuck in the trunk and back seat of a car. Some varmint was certainly being nasty to them!
The story concluded, "The calves will be cared for at a ranch while officials try to determine who owns them."
They were obviously mavericks (unbranded calves), or it would have been easy to identify the owner. You will recall we had the same problem with a truckload of cattle right here in Baton Rouge last year — they were unbranded, so it took a while to find their home. Will people never learn?
Dear Andy: I can see why this issue would be one of great concern to you…