The ‘peepul’ are still in the middle

Joel d’Aquin Thibodeaux says, “I came across a letter my grandfather Joseph Henry d’Aquin, a salesman, wrote to his brother Rene ‘Dax’ d’Aquin on Jan. 15, 1939.

“One might write something similar today. Here is an excerpt:

“ ‘Are you pretty busy with your work, and what is the outlook for 1939?

“ ‘In my line we are sort of on the anxious seat. One prediction is as good as another.

“ ‘What with disturbances in Europe and uncertainty here in America with Congress in session, wrangling and arguing as to how to give the “Dear Peepul” a square deal, or a round deal, or a misdeal, or “sumpthin,” I don’t think any of us can set himself up as a prophet, so for my part, I will simply do my best and let things take their course (just like we do when it rains, we let it rain.)’ ”

Then “Choot!”

Sue Warnock says our story about 10-year-old Alex, who remembered the fire safety message “Stop, drop and roll!” in an emergency reminded her of the time, “We suspected that my then-5-year-old great-niece Christina may have been spending too much time with her father at the hunting camp.

“Asked what she learned in her kindergarten fire safety class, Christina replied, ‘Stop, lock and load!’ ”

Going frog wild

Daryl Berg was amused by a story in the Thursday paper about a guy accused of stealing a pair of frogs from three teenagers at gunpoint.

The headline was “Boutte man accused of armed frog theft.”

Says Daryl, “I pictured the frog holding a tiny pistol.”

Cat scan

After our story about the youngster who speculated aloud in church that a lady’s fur coat was possum, I heard a similar tale from Mildred P. Worrell, of Clinton:

“Many years ago my second-grade teacher, Mrs. Lovey Harang, one of the three famed Rist sisters of Clinton, had a coat made in the ‘cocoon’ style of the 1930s, taupe wool with a lavish fur collar.

“Her sister, Miss Lou Rist, our neighbor who operated the Rist Hotel, had given me my first cat, a long-haired tabby.

“Inventive little thing that I was, I deduced that the collar (which was actually gray fox and very fine) was made from several of Miss Lou’s Persians who had passed on, and I told my classmates so.

“Dear Mrs. Harang got wind of my tale and gently corrected my error, making sure we knew there was no skinning of domestic felines, alive or dead, going on.

“I currently have a Himalayan look-alike puss that has a coat that is a dead (sic) ringer for that collar.”

America’s open!

The Rev. Susie Thomas, of First United Methodist, says that after almost two years, America Street between East Boulevard and Maximilian is open: “Our new Youth Building and Conference Center is finally finished, and drivers can now joyously cruise on America past our church once again.

“Thanks, Baton Rouge, for your patience. Our new building is worth the inconvenience, I hope.”

Thank-you note

Friends of St. Francis Xavier Catholic School thanks the Bet-R Store and its deli staff “for their generosity and support of our fundraiser in July.

“And to the Baton Rouge community, thank you for making our fundraiser a success!”

Special People Dept.

• Elva Meyers, of Oakwood Village in Zachary, celebrated her 95th birthday Saturday.

• Former LSU women’s basketball coach Van Chancellor says his mother-in-law, Murl Jones, of Williamsburg Retirement Community, celebrates her 90th birthday Tuesday (or, as she says, celebrates her 39th birthday for the 51st time).

Don’t panic!

Bob Hernandez, of Watson, offers an alarming medical alert:

“Medical researchers have discovered a new disease that has no symptoms.

“It is impossible to detect, and there is no known cure.

“Fortunately, no cases have been reported thus far.”

That’s the truth!

Harriet St. Amant has this story about our neighbor to the west:

“I attended an oil executives convention once.

“The first speaker, Sam Smith, was from Texas.

“He rambled on for a good half hour, then introduced the next speaker.

“The Texas man said, ‘Our next speaker is John Jones. He’s from Oklahoma, an outlying province of Texas.’

“The second speaker went to the dais and said, ‘Thank you, Mr. Smith. But to set the record straight, there ain’t NO state that can out-lie Texas.’ ”