After I mentioned a “wedding from hell” in the Thursday column, I figured I’d hear about some other wedding-day disasters — and did I ever!

For instance, this story from M.C.:

“My wedding day started with a fire under my hood on the way to church.

“An usher couldn’t attend due to an accident, which left me scrambling for a last-minute replacement.

“The friend who was to help with refreshments at the reception didn’t show, which left me chipping ice for the punch — and smashing my finger under a block of ice.

“The priest performing the ceremony showed up late, and then used the names of the couple from the previous ceremony he’d performed.

“It rained all the way to Florida, where the hotel a friend recommended for the honeymoon was so bad we promptly checked out the following morning.

“In spite of this inauspicious start, we will celebrate our 45th anniversary in June ... if nothing happens before then.”

Bridge rules!

George E. McLean, of Metairie, says, “Back in the ’90s my wife and I were touring the Northwest and decided to visit Butchart Gardens on Vancouver Island.

“At lunch, as we approached their cafeteria cashier we heard our names called. It was two close friends from Metairie, who were flying to Alaska in a small airplane to go fishing and decided to spend an hour or two in the gardens.

“And what did the ladies talk about? Who was to have the bridge group next!”

Horsing around

Roy Pitchford, of Monroe, says mention of Gov. Jimmie Davis in the Saturday column “reminds me that former New Orleans reporter Cope Routh was present when Davis rode his horse Sunshine up the steps of the State Capitol and into the lobby.

“Routh wrote that it was ‘the first time an entire horse had been inside the Capitol in years.’”

Speaking of Jimmie

Ann Peeples, of Belle Chasse, adding to our Jimmie Davis stories, says she’s noticed “You Are My Sunshine” merchandise for sale — featuring the quote on “reclaimed wood to shower curtains.”

Ann also tells of hearing Jimmie Davis’ “original gospel recording of this song on a radio show recently. I don’t know the station, because I was in my car and switched when the song was over. My search for the record or the words has not turned up anything yet.

“If any of your readers can help me out, it would make my day.”

This old store

When Ed Cullen posed a question about the last downtown grocery store, which closed 50 years ago, he already had the answer from “Mr. Downtown,” Davis Rhorer.

So I held a little contest to see if anyone else knew the answer.

Donna Canezaro was the first to say it was “the National Food Store on Government Street, near WAFB. I used to walk there when visiting my grandmother. She lived near the Courthouse. What wonderful memories!”

Davis gave the answer as “The National Food Store which occupied the site of present day McDonald’s on the river end of Government Street.”

For her stroll down memory lane, Donna wins lunch with me at the Pastime.

Sweet talk

When I suggested in the Jan. 19 column that the two sweet treats of the season be combined into Girl Scout cookie king cakes, I should have known someone was already on this.

Marianne Addy, of Girl Scouts Louisiana East, informs us that “while we don’t know of any Girl Scout cookie king cakes, Grimaldi’s Pizzeria in the Mall of Louisiana is offering cheesecake by the slice during February: a chocolate mint cheesecake with Thin Mints and a caramel coconut cheesecake with Samoas.

“One hundred percent of the cheesecake sales are being donated to Girl Scouts Louisiana East!”

Special People Dept.

Lt. Col. Phil A. St. Amant celebrates his 97th birthday on Tuesday, Feb. 3.

On Tuesday, Feb. 3, Marguerite and Jesse “Cajun Chef” Dugas, of Paincourtville, celebrate their 64th anniversary.

Robin Hood radio

Ray Schell, of Prairieville, says, “Your many reader comments on listening to WWL radio on their car radios to get the broadcasts of LSU games reminded me of a similar situation.

“In about 1965, in Michigan, I purchased a used AM/FM/shortwave Scott radio, but got limited reception on the shortwave with its attached small antenna.

“There was a very tall elm tree in my back yard. With a little experience in archery, I attached a very long insulated wire to an arrow and shot it to the top of the elm tree, then attached the other end to my radio.

“From just north of Detroit I could get Mexico City on the shortwave, and excellent reception on the other bands.

“It beat sitting out in the car to listen to the radio.”

Talk to 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.