With football season winding down, it’s time to recall great games of the past and dream about great games we hope the future holds for us.

Donald Starkey, of Livingston, recalls one such great game for the LSU Tigers, and the special way he celebrated when the game ended:

“I was in a campground in western North Carolina on Oct. 11, 1997, when Florida came to Baton Rouge with coach Steve Spurrier and a No. 1 ranking. (Florida had beaten LSU 56-13 the year before in Gainesville.)

“I’m sitting around a campfire with no one who’s interested in football.

“I go to my truck midway through the second quarter, turn the dial on my AM radio and wow! WWL (870) from New Orleans comes in loud and clear.

“After LSU won 28-21, I regret that I was unable to see the expression on Mr. Spurrier’s face as he made his way to the tunnel.

“Folks already retired to their RVs came swarming out in their pajamas, wondering what’s wrong with the old man in the white truck laying down on his horn.”

A boy’s life

On Saturday, Jan. 17, Pat Shingleton announced that he had been writing his “Weather News” column in the Baton Rouge edition of The Advocate since 1999 (he also has a gig on a local TV station).

Pat thanked “the Smiley Anders School of Column Writing” for helping him, but didn’t tell the whole story.

He’s actually a graduate of the Smiley Anders School of REMEDIAL Column Writing — where he made a strong C.

Seriously, though, I’ve enjoyed Pat’s tales of his boyhood in Pennsylvania — delivering the Pittsburgh Post Gazette on his bike on chilly mornings; scuffling with his rowdy brothers; dealing with a cranky coal furnace; baking potatoes in a neighborhood bonfire on a snowy day; his grandfather wearing long johns year-round; homemade root beer bottles exploding in the basement during a sudden hot spell; hitching rides on the bumpers of cars sliding down the icy hill by their house.

I feel I know Pat’s Pennsylvania family better than I know some of my own kinfolks.

Sometimes I enjoy his little tales so much I forget to check the weather for that day — which explains some inappropriate clothing choices you might have noticed on me...

Thanks, Oliver

A reader says he realizes this is heresy in Louisiana, but there’s evidence that “You Are My Sunshine” was originally written by Oliver Hood, of The Rice Brothers Gang:

“First recorded in 1939 for Bluebird Records by The Pine Ridge Boys and again for Decca Records by The Rice Brothers Gang.

Jimmie Davis bought the song and rights from Paul Rice and put his own name on it; a common practice at that time.

“His recording was done in 1940 for Decca Records. Since then the song has been credited to Jimmie Davis and Charles Mitchell.

“Davis made the song what it is today, but Mr. Hood deserves his credit as well.”

A website on this topic says the Hood family still possesses the brown paper sack on which Oliver wrote the song.

An Italian thing

My paisanos at the American Italian Cultural Center in New Orleans held the 30th annual Sports Hall of Fame Banquet on Saturday, Jan. 17, and presented its national award to Ed Marinaro, football player and actor.

Other awards were: the Joseph Giarusso Civic Award to East Baton Rouge District Attorney Hillar Moore, the Buddy D Media Award to Gary Rispone of Baton Rouge, the Woman of the Year Award to Bette Caldwell, the Veteran Award to Col. Ignatius P. Liberto, the Louis Prima Arts & Entertainment Award to Robert Davi and the Dr. John Adriani Medical Award to Dr. Vincent Liberto. Hall of Fame inductees were Tony Papa and Anthony Scelfo.

Special People Dept.

Mary Elizabeth Puig, of Covington, celebrates her 94th birthday on Wednesday, Jan. 21.

Josephine and Johnny Zito, of Plaquemine, celebrated their 67th anniversary on Sunday, Jan. 18. He is a World War II veteran and Purple Heart recipient.

On Wednesday, Jan. 21, Wiley and Audrey Duke, of Baton Rouge, celebrate their 66th anniversary.

Pete and Janie Constantino celebrate their 64th anniversary on Wednesday, Jan. 21.

Jimmy and Billie Langlois, of Baton Rouge, celebrated their 58th anniversary on Monday, Jan. 19.

Technical jargon

Shirley Fleniken came across these terms that might be useful to computer owners out there:

State-of-the-art — Any computer you can’t afford.

Obsolete — Any computer you own.

Microsecond — The time it takes for your state-of-the-art computer to become obsolete.

Talk to 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.