It's interesting what you acquire at festive occasions. After our Spanish Town Mardi Gras parties, merrymakers (we never knew who) would leave behind jackets (shed as the day warmed), hats, umbrellas, nice plastic containers for holding drinks, and ice chests — lots and lots of ice chests.   

Missy Guilliot, of Lafayette, comments on this phenomenon:

"Back when our children were in high school, our ice chests were borrowed, but somehow never returned.

"In frustration, my husband took a permanent marker and labeled all of our ice chests with our last name and home phone number. (Our children still did not bring the ice chests home.)

"Long after all the children had moved out, our phone rang in the middle of the night. I hurriedly picked up, and the voice on the other end, obviously after enjoying too many root beers, said 'Mais, I got your icebox,' and hung up.

"If only the ice chest could share its travels with us."

Alternate names

Perry Rose, of Denham Springs, says, "The Tuesday story about someone named 'Toot Toot' sparked my memory, as I know a 'Toot.'

"Other people I knew who had nicknames came back to me:

“ ‘Jingles,' 'Bucky,' 'Tippy,' 'Red,' and 'Lumpy.'

"And 'Abe and/or Shanty Hogan' Lincoln. The 'Abe' for Mr. Lincoln is a no-brainer, but 'Shanty Hogan' may puzzle some folks. Abe, the catcher on the local baseball team, did his best to imitate a period pro baseball catcher, Shanty Hogan."

Which reminds me

Back in the ’60s, when I was doing public relations for the Louisiana Farm Bureau Federation, I quickly found that in some parts of south Louisiana, so many people had the same last name that nicknames were common.

For instance, I once called a parish Farm Bureau president in one of the river parishes. I had his name, but not his phone number.

When I asked the local telephone operator (this was back when there were such people) for the number of the gent, she asked, "Do you want Bubba or Bubba's daddy?" 

Clock or calendar?

David Theophilus has another memory of LSU's Kirby Smith Hall dorm:

"Regarding the mention of Buster Schilling, as Kirby Smith's head resident:

"I worked for him in the late ’80s. His only hard and fast rule was that the dorm had to be quiet during certain hours so students would have the opportunity to study.

"Those hours were August to May. We managed to keep things under control, barely."

Speaking of Kirby Smith

Richard Kramer says living on the top floor of the 13-story building was "good for dropping a giant water balloon out the window or unfurling toilet paper rolls during a windy night which floated all the way to the Parade Ground."

Special People Dept.

  • Lucy Mae "Lou" Alleman, of Paincourtville, celebrates her 99th birthday Sunday, April 25.
  • Albertha Johnson celebrates her 97th birthday Friday, April 23. She has been a member of Greater Mt. Carmel Baptist Church in Scotlandville for over 70 years.
  • Diane Grant, of Baton Rouge, celebrates her 94th birthday Sunday, April 25.
  • Jesse York celebrates his 93rd birthday Saturday, April 24.

A missed lunch

Ronnie Spann says his mother, Diane Grant, who celebrates her 94th birthday Sunday, is a Pearl Harbor survivor:

"She had an invitation for lunch on board the battleship USS Arizona on Dec. 7, 1941, from Captain Franklin Van Valkenburgh, the commander of the ship, who was killed that morning."

Ask Mr. Answer Man

My learned colleague, Mr. Answer Man, deals with an ethical question regarding our puzzle page:

Marsha R., of Baton Rouge, asks:

"Here's a clue for readers who puzzle out the 'Celebrity Cipher' cryptogram. When those quoted are contemporary, it's often their birthday. In 'Today's Birthdays' at the bottom of the 'Today in History' column, you often find the name of the person quoted in the cryptogram.

"On Tuesday I guessed the first name was 'George,' and skimmed the birthdays to find 'Takei.' I got a lot of unknown letters to quickly solve the rest of the puzzle.

"Is this cheating?"

Mr. Answer Man answers: "Yes." 

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.