“Music really does ease the soul and unite us all,” says Debbie May “Hollywood” Lihou, former Baton Rougean now living in Wagga Wagga, Australia:

“My son Hunter’s year-10 commerce class went to a local nursing home to sing some Christmas carols.

“When I was asking him about his excursion and how it went, he got a little emotional telling me about the day. (Well, as much as a 16-year-old will show emotion).

“He told me the songs they sang, and then mentioned that they sang ‘You Are My Sunshine.’

“This song holds a very special place in Hunter’s heart.

“His Nana (June May) and his beloved Papa Mike (Mike Ryan) always sang this to him. It’s even more special to him since Mike’s passing.

“But he did not realize the other connection to the song.

“‘You are my Sunshine’ was written by Louisiana’s Gov. Jimmie Davis. How appropriate to have a Louisianian singing that song with his classmates in a nursing home way down in Wagga Wagga, Australia!

“And, Hunter did not need the sheet music for that song! It’s a small world indeed.”

Important first step

Bertha Hinojosa assigned her first-grade students to write a step-by-step recipe for their favorite dish.

“One lad was eager to share his recipe in front of the class.

“Bertha reminded him that he should start at the beginning.

“‘OK,’ he said. ‘First, you kill a chicken.’”

Carousel memories

Patsy Borie says mention of Baton Rouge’s City Park carousel reminded her:

“I grew up in the South Carrollton section of New Orleans.

“‘Our’ park was Audubon Park.

“As children my friends and I loved riding the ‘flying horses,’ as the Audubon Park carousel was known in those days.

“A crime that the flying horses were torn down. It was a beautiful carousel.”

Running joke

“I rose at dawn Thanksgiving morning and drove downtown to run in the March of Dimes 5K Turkey Trot,” says John Engelsman.

“My modest goal was to remain ambulatory at the finish line.

“Succeeding in that, I arrived home to find my wife, Cathi, just getting out of bed.

“‘How did you do?’ she asked.

“‘Out of almost a thousand competitors,’ I replied, ‘I finished fourth in my age and gender category!’

“She immediately brandished the deflation needle that the sisterhood gives every woman on her wedding day and said: ‘That’s wonderful, and how many were there in your age and gender category?’

“‘Four,’ I reluctantly admitted.

“Smiley, I believe that I’ve reached the stage in life where just showing up is a kind of victory.”

Dog days

“Anonymous from Prairieville” tells the reader who says otherwise that “corn dogs WERE sold at Tiger Stadium, at the east upper concession stands this football season.

“Since visitors from the other schools usually have seats in that area, it just reinforces the notion that we are corn dogs.

“By the way, the only people I saw eating them were the visitors, including Ole Miss fans.

“LSU fans know better!”

Highway heroes

Paul Vance tells of “an act of kindness by one of Baton Rouge’s finest, Officer Cody Gunter.

“We were voting at the Kenilworth precinct Saturday morning, the rain was coming down in buckets, and standing in the parking lot putting air in a citizen’s flat tire was Officer Gunter.

“(For the record, the car was NOT mine.)

“I’m sure that’s not in his job description.

“Thank you, Officer Gunter, for SERVING and protecting.”

Special People Dept.

On Wednesday, Dec. 10, Felicie Rogillio, of Rosedale, celebrates her 93rd birthday.

Unnecessary roughness

Dan Burkhalter, the Carencro Curmudgeon, says if politics were like football, the political candidates in the just-finished election campaigns would be firing their offensive coordinators ­— because all their ads were offensive.

Multi-tasking at Mass

Ralph Drouin says, “After reading Mr. Bill Quinn’s ‘It is great to live with today’s technology’ in the Tuesday column, I have observed the changing of the greetings before Mass by the announcements given.

“Years ago, it was, ‘Welcome to our services. Please turn off all pagers.’

“As time progressed, it was, ‘Please turn off all cell phones and pagers.’

“Then, ‘Please turn off all cell phones.’

“Now, it’s, ‘Please turn off all cell phones ­­­— and please, no texting during Mass.’

“My next guess would be, ‘Please, no video conferencing during Mass.’”

Contact Smiley

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.