Smiley Anders

Advocate columnist Smiley Anders

Geri Teasley, of Prairieville, says, "In Louisiana, it seems some people think just being dressed is appropriate for going out.

"It's a Friday night out, and you put a little effort into dressing — nice dress and heels. Your husband wears a tailored shirt, dress pants, maybe a jacket.

"And as you walk into the candle-lit, five-star restaurant, you are greeted by tables of Bermuda shorts and T-shirts.

"I went to court to get a ticket thrown out, and almost every person there was in shorts and T-shirts. The judge actually made a point of telling the gathered masses they showed disrespect for the court showing up in this manner."

"I truly miss the days when people took pride in how they looked. …"

The young rebel

"TW" says, "I’m not really the radical subversive type, but I admit I like to see the powers that be take a hit every now and then — and clearly my daughters picked up on this as they grew up.

"When my younger daughter was in sixth grade, I observed her applying fingernail polish on a Sunday night. I reminded her that it was a dress code violation and she would just have to take it off for school the next day.

"She looked at me, smiled and said, 'It’s clear polish, so they won’t know. I’m stickin’ it to The Man.'

"I was never more proud of her."

La La story

Ken Toups, of Lafayette, our unpaid music historian, answers the question in the classic New Orleans R&B song, "Who Shot the La La?"

"Lawrence 'La La' Nelson, born in the 9th Ward in 1936, had a 1961 hit when, as 'Prince La La,' he wrote and recorded 'She Put the Hurt on Me.'

"He performed the song wearing a turban and fancy robe, attire later adopted by Dr. John.

"In 1963, he died of, most probably, a heroin overdose. But around town, rumor had it that he may have been shot.

"The next year, 'Who Shot the La La' was released by local singer Oliver 'La La' Morgan' (he added the 'La La' after the song became a New Orleans area hit).

"So, who in fact shot the La La? Probably no one — but who knows?"

A brief commercial

You can check out Ken Toups' musical knowledge on his "20th Century Pop" internet radio show at noon Saturdays and Sundays at aocinc.org/csradio.

Finger man

Continuing our search for the state cookie:

John Hu, of Baton Rouge, says mention of finger-shaped Italian cookies reminds him, "Coffee Call sells beignets, and you can order them as fingers. I actually prefer the fingers over the regular beignets. Therefore, I nominate beignet fingers as Louisiana's state cookie."

(But because beignets are already Louisiana's state doughnut, we could be accused of double dipping, so to speak. …)

Special People Dept.

  • Dutch Prager celebrates his 94th birthday Monday, Jan. 14. He served in World War II aboard the submarine USS Kingfish.
  • Rose and Jerry Berggren celebrate their 52nd anniversary Monday, Jan. 14.
  • Roy and Claudia LeJeune celebrated 50 years of marriage Sunday, Jan. 13. 

Ice cream connection

Pauline Banquer tells a "small world" story: 

"My sister and I were in France 'seeing the sites' after a day of classes at a language institute. 

"We were in front of the Eiffel Tower when we decided to get ice cream. I placed the order, speaking French of course, and the vendor asked where was I from.

"I answered 'Les Etates Unis.' He asked where in the United States, and I answered, 'L'etate de La Louisiane.'

"'Where in Louisiana?' he asked. 'Baton Rouge,' I answered.

"In English, he asked, 'Do you know where is Covington?'

"It turned out his daughter was a hairdresser in Covington. I couldn't help thinking, of all the ice cream vendors in Paris, I found the one who had a tie to Louisiana." 

Suspicious slang

Marsha R. says, "Got a phone call from 'the IRS.' She was very business-like, insisting I send money or 'The cops will come to your house. …'

"I'm pretty sure the IRS would send police, not 'cops.'

"I hung up."

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