Dear Smiley: My dog Boudreaux is beautiful; a mixed-breed with thick brown, black, and white fur.

People we encounter on our walks often ask what kind of dog he is. I usually say a border collie, Shetland sheepdog mix, but I wasn't sure and really wanted to know.

I sent off for a doggie DNA kit from a company boasting over 350 breeds in its database. My sons and I swabbed the inside of his cheeks and mailed the sample in.

A little over three weeks later we were rewarded with an email of his profile, and lots of surprises — 17 breeds in Boudreaux’s DNA.

He is 23% Australian cattle dog and 14% Portuguese water dog. (We laughed at this; he will not walk through an inch of standing water on our patio.)

He also has various terriers, beagles, and even a Rhodesian ridgeback in his blood; but Boudreaux became pensive when we told him he has a Chihuahua ancestor.

His street cred got a big boost, though, when he also found he has "Mexican street dog" in him. They are characterized as “scrappy and street-wise dogs who have conned their way into the hearts of many a tourist.”

"Con artist" probably explains how a Chihuahua made it into his family tree.


Baton Rouge

Covering up

Dear Smiley: Having worked in banks for many years, and frequently serving as the security officer, I'm having a difficult time dealing with the recent notices on banks' entrance doors stating "You must wear a mask to enter."

I retired just in time!



Chews from home

Dear Smiley: The story about the Double Bubble gum reminds me of when my wife and I were stationed in North Dakota.

My wife's mom would mail us some good Louisiana goodies that cannot be found up north.

She would mail us Louisiana rice, Community Coffee and Double Bubble Gum. My wife loves that type of bubble gum, and for some reason there was none in North Dakota.



Dear Barry: They had bubble gum, but it froze. 

"Mean" comment

Dear Smiley: "I mean" means you are trying to clarify something you just said. But today newscasters, politicians, business execs, Hollywood folks, and sports announcers start with the lame-brained "I mean" before they say anything that needs clarification.

"I mean, like, you know..." is another phrase that takes up air space with garbage lingo. I want to scream: "NO, I don't know, because you haven't told me anything to know."

At least pretend you did not sleep through your 8th and 9th grade English classes.



At their posts

Dear Smiley: With all the news about mail-in ballots and problems, etc., I thought this would shed some light on post office workers and how they meet customer needs.

I was at the Woodlawn Post Office, and there was an elderly gentleman at the counter with his mail-in ballot.

The clerk (sorry, don’t know her name) watched him sign the form, then she signed the form as a witness, checked the date, put the ballot in the external envelope, sealed it and sold him the stamps.

I was so impressed with the kindness shown a customer. I really believe postal workers are good people working in very trying times. We are lucky to have these people in Baton Rouge.


Baton Rouge

Drinking while poor

Dear Smiley: Being almost destitute while at LSU, saving a little on each can was not my primary reason for drinking Dixie and Falstaff.

It was because people as poor as I was were less likely to bum them than the “better” beers.



Beer trivia

Dear Smiley: Regal Beer, a New Orleans beer brewed in a large facility on Bourbon and Bienville until 1960, got the name "Regal" by reversing the letters in "lager."



Crowd control

Dear Smiley: Regarding your concern in the Thursday column about Clark Kent finding a phone booth so he can change into Superman:

I hear the Baton Rouge Chapter of The Nick Saban Fan Club is looking for one to house their annual convention.



Write Smiley at He can also be reached by mail at P.O. Box 588, Baton Rouge, LA 70821. Follow Smiley Anders on Twitter, @SmileyAndersAdv.