Bill Quinn tells this tale of creative (if not effective) hunting:

“As a 12-year-old I found myself with two older kids and their dad deep in a swamp out from Sorrento.

“I was told we were going ‘Roman candle squirrel hunting.’

“The dogs would chase the squirrels up the trees and into holes. One of the older kids would climb the tree to stick the Roman candle in the hole.

“The bushy tails abandoned the hole ASAP. Some jumped out and hit the ground running. Some bounced off the climber’s hat or coat.

“I don’t remember if we got a squirrel, but it was very exciting.”

Stay fit on the farm

“Your recent columns about the Fitbit phenomenon gave me cause to pause and think about the generation before me,” says Tony Falterman, of Napoleonville.

“I don’t know if you can burn one up. However, can you imagine the generation that was up at 4 a.m. milking cows, feeding livestock, working the fields behind mules and caring for very large gardens wearing a Fitbit?

“I don’t thing they wanted to know how many steps they took every day! Their Fitbit was how much they ached when they went to bed at dark!”

Old Beer Dept.

George McLean, of Metairie, asks, “Are all your other readers too young to remember the Union Brewery in New Orleans?”

I suppose so, George. The brewery on North Robertson Street, which produced Old Union beer, closed in 1939.

Russell T. Hebert, of New Orleans, says, “One kind of beer that is not mentioned is 4X” — which my sources tell me was brewed by Jax in 1940-46.

(Since over the years there have been some 30 breweries in New Orleans, we might be hearing of several more brands.)

Picky drinker!

Speaking of old New Orleans beer, Tookie Hendry, of Baton Rouge, says, “Frank’s Grille, in the same Nicholson Drive building as the Brown Door, had 15-cent draft beer in the early ’60s.

“Needless to say, it was a magnet for us college guys.

“After several years of enjoying the cheap prices, Frank asked me one day: ‘If I go up to 20 cents on my draft, will y’all still come?’

“I said I did not think that would stop us. The problem was, the new beer tasted green. It wasn’t the price, Frank, it was the Regal!”

Don’t horse around!

Billy “Not A Cowboy” Chapman addresses our seminar on cigarette rolling:

“Even though I am not an experienced rider, I know why cowboys had to learn how to roll a cigarette with one hand. With some horses you never let go of the reins!”

The eyes have it

John Currier, of Port Allen, says, “In the late 1970s my college roommate and I vowed we would someday attend an adult continuing education class by a nationally known presenter.

“We grew older and so did he, but our dream was finally realized at the end of February this year. We spent four days learning in the presence of our hero.

“On the last day of course everyone wanted to take pictures with him, but we had an unusual request.

“As we stood on either side of him, arms around each other’s shoulders, we asked, ‘Could you roll your eyes for the picture? That way our friends will realize you really got to know us and this isn’t just a photo op.’”

Special People Dept.

Rita Gauthier, of Metairie, celebrated her 90th birthday on Tuesday, March 8.

Keep on smiling

Shirley Fleniken offers this example of keeping your sense of humor when you’d have every right to lose it:

“My sister-in-law, Winda Underwood, had her house torn apart a few weeks ago by a tornado in Livingston.

“The only part still intact was the bathroom, where she had taken refuge. She feels lucky to be alive.

“For a while after it happened, she became used to one question, which got asked by friends, family, the Terminix guy and many others: ‘What do you mean, your house is gone?’

“It became the standard reply from people when she told them what happened, usually on the phone.

“She even came to expect the inevitable question, ‘What do you mean, your house is gone?’

“At least it made her smile!”

False alarm

Sarah Stravinska, of Chestnut, says, “Keith Horcasitas’ Wednesday story of misunderstood Gen X remarks (calling something ‘the bomb’ is a compliment) brought to mind my own story.

“I often mess up a recipe, so when daughter Robyn took a bite of my dinner and said to me, ‘You’ve got issues,’ my heart sank. What had I done wrong this time?

“I said, ‘Yes I do, but what are you referring to just now?’

“Robyn asked what I meant. I said she had just said I had issues.

“‘No,’ she replied, ‘I said the food is delicious.’”

Contacting Smiley

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.