Dear Smiley: Many years ago I had a big black Lab named Brutus. Just before the teal hunting season, I would take him along the jogging trail on Lake Pontchartrain in Kenner.
Duke Rivet, of Baton Rouge, says, "Growing up on a poultry farm during the Eisenhower administration, my city slicker cousins from New Orleans would often come to stay with their country cousins near Marksville during the summer.
Storm, our "Old Baton Rouge" nostalgist, was reminded of this clever marketing method by tales in recent columns of the banana splits at Borden's ice cream parlors of bygone days:
Dear Smiley: I was a member of the Golden Band from Tiger Land in 1968 when LSU played Florida State in the first Peach Bowl (at Grant Field on the Georgia Tech campus).
Watching the Saints stumble, bumble and fumble in a playoff loss to the Vikings stirred up unwelcome memories — and got me worrying about LSU's contest with Clemson in the Expensive German Car Superdome.
Dusty Kling, of Baton Rouge, says, "I would be amiss in my amateur proofreading if I failed to bring to your attention a possible misquote in a December Opinion section of The Advocate.
Dear Smiley: Someone recently sent me a photo of Republican and Democratic legislators attempting to “make harmony” at the Governor’s Mansion a few hours after sine die adjournment.
Mary Brown, of New Orleans, says, "When my then-fiancé and I went to City Hall to get our marriage license back in 1991, the clerk asked us where we were born.
I have to confess I'm a bit "Bah! Humbug!" about Christmas movies, with the exception of "A Christmas Story," Jean Shepherd's wonderful tale of Ralphie, a kid in the 1940s, and his craving for a Red Ryder BB gun.
OK, I give up. Noting all the hype about Joe Burrow and the LSU Tigers, I promised myself I wouldn't add to the pandemonium and would limit comments on Joe and the SEC champs.
John Currier says, "My daughter and son-in-law were in for a visit. He is from Cleveland, and it is such a different world that he is sometimes not sure whether we are making Louisiana stuff up or not.
Joel d'Aquin Thibodeaux, of Baton Rouge, says, "Algie Petrere's story of the little girl picking out her own too-expensive dress reminds me of the time I was shopping with my Aunt Bert, cousin Linda, and Linda’s 4-year-old daughter Amy at the mall.
Peggy Davis, of Baton Rouge, says, "I’ve really enjoyed reading about how Cajuns used their French language skills during World War II, and am so proud of their contribution.
Dear Smiley: In August Buddy and I adopted an 8-month- old poodle named Bear. He was too rambunctious for a household with two small children, refused to be potty trained, and ignored all reprimands for his alpha-dog behavior.
Fay Weilbaecher, of Covington, tells of her uncle, Frenchie DeNoux, "the biggest animal lover of them all," who liked to adopt baby alligators, skunks, raccoons, potbellied pigs, etc.:
Dear Smiley: Business trips before and after the fall of the Berlin Wall not only allowed me to chip my own piece of the wall and buy a souvenir T-shirt, but reminded me how much we take for granted in our great country.
John Currier picks up nuisance alligators and relocates them, kind of an "only in Louisiana or Florida" job, I would imagine. He has a sense of humor about his occupation. For example:
Alex "Sonny" Chapman, of Ville Platte, comments on the George Morris story in the Wednesday Advocate, about Cajuns serving as French interpreters in World War II:
Since her death, I've received many recollections about Holly Clegg, author of the "Trim and Terrific" series of cookbooks and a popular Advocate food columnist:
Kathy Abbott says, "Your column recalling one reader’s experience during the fall of the Berlin Wall brought to mind my husband’s experience in Dusseldorf during the German Reunification Celebration on Oct. 3, 1990.
Dear Smiley: The Advocate article on the opening day of the New Orleans airport covered all the features expected: parking, security screening, check-in, and amenities.