After Earl C. Johnson came up with the economic theory that prosperity can be determined by the number of garbage cans a home possesses, I heard from some revisionists.

Vernon Yielding says, “I noticed one major flaw that may require recalculation.

“He didn’t take into consideration the amount of debris, especially cigarettes, drink cups and burger wrappers, being disposed at red lights.

“I guess this would indicate we are doing much better than he thought.”

And Don Haydel, of Star Hill, says the problem with the trash can economic indicator is that the number of cans never decreases:

“I’ve found that the amount of trash a household generates is equal to the number of garbage cans you own, plus one-half garbage can more.

“Hence all the shoving and jamming required one day before the truck passes.

“If you buy another can to take care of the one-half can of garbage you don’t have room for, you immediately start generating another whole can worth of trash, and so on.”

Easy riders

I don’t know what to make of Malcolm Wright’s comment on that ad in The Advocate promoting the Fourth of July fireworks on the Mississippi River.

It shows Sylvia Weatherspoon, Pat Shingleton and me riding a rocket.

There’s also a commercial on WBRZ, with us as rocket-riding bobbleheads.

Malcolm’s comment was “Two out of three ain’t bad!”

Since I know he’s not talking about the lovely and talented Sylvia, I assume he’s picking on poor Pat.

No fair, Malcolm — we can’t all be sex symbols. …

Call me Slim

I’ve got a lot of smart-aleck cracks about that rocket ad — Bill Gardner notes that I’m on the end where the hot air comes out — but I really love it.

That artist made me skinnier than I’ve been since 1965. …

What Boudreaux?

Milford Fryer adds to our seminar on out-of-state “Cajun” restaurants:

“Some LSU fans who have traveled to the games at Virginia Tech say there is a Boudreaux’s restaurant in Blacksburg that is greatly overnamed.”

Strange bird

Wana Ann Fort said one morning in May an unusual bird visited their feeder:

“We watched as he chased off all the other birds before settling down to eat — and attack his image in the window near the feeder.

“He was very beautiful, with a bright red triangle at his throat, black head and back, white chest and a tail he flared out to reveal white and black feathers.

“My sister gave me a bird book for my birthday, and I found our visitor to be a rose-breasted grosbeak, indigenous to areas north of us.

“We wonder how he arrived here all alone and if he ever arrived home.

“We would like to know if anyone else saw him or has ever seen a member of this species.”

Worthy causes

The Multiple Sclerosis Society says registration is open from now until Sept. 23 for the 2011 “Bike MS Louisiana” fundraiser Oct. 1-2.

The bike ride is from Hammond to McComb, Miss., and back.

To ride or volunteer, visit http://www.bikemslouisiana.org or call (800) 344-4867.

Special People Dept.

• Elois Wesley Davis celebrates her 96th birthday Sunday. She recently retired from working in the nursery at Amite Baptist Church.

• Lena Cardinal, of Williamsburg Retirement Community, celebrates her 93rd birthday Saturday.

• Les and Barbara Tassin, of Central, celebrate 50 years of marriage Saturday.

• Garron and Carolyn Chaisson celebrate their 50th anniversary Friday.

Thought for the Day

From Gerald Hubenak: “We should always look forward with pleasure and backward without regrets.”

Fish, not fowl

Grace Oulton says, “We decided to vacation in North Carolina instead of the beach so the Louisiana grandchildren could experience mountains and freshwater lakes.

“In preparation for the trip, we gave the four grandchildren fishing rods for Christmas.

“Braden, 4, could not wait to begin fishing.

“His grandfather showed him how to cast, and he was having the time of his life.

“While he was casting, a duck swam near his line, followed by another. I told him to be careful so he did not hook a duck.

“He looked at me and said, ‘Nanny, I’m fishin’, not duckin’.”