Before the New Orleans Pelicans became a basketball team, the bird was the symbol of New Orleans' minor league baseball team.
Like a lot of teams in the lower tiers of baseball, it had a checkered history. Founded in 1887, it existed off and on until its longest run, from 1901 to 1959.
Charlie Anderson recalls those bygone days, and the Pelicans' legendary radio announcer Ted Andrews, "The Old Redhead," who also announced Tulane football and basketball:
"I remember listening, in the 1950s, to Ted Andrews doing play-by-play of Pelicans road games from the studio in New Orleans.
"He would give details of play as information came over teletype (which could be heard faintly).
"There was a recording of routine crowd noise that played continuously, with recordings of crowd reaction that were keyed in at appropriate times.
"This recording was played over and over; periodically you could hear the same peanut vendor’s spiel."
Name that beer
This is the kind of task my readers relish, and handle with great skill:
It seems that the folks who brew Dixie Beer, the venerable New Orleans' staple, are seeking a new name, one that sounds less, uh, antebellum.
As the brewery itself puts it, Dixie "has embarked upon a renaming process to embrace a more inclusive, culturally-aware and socially conscious future.
"The iconic brewery is enlisting the public's help in its renaming efforts. Locals and beer enthusiasts will have the opportunity to suggest a new brand name and provide a narrative behind it via an online form on the Dixie Beer website, dixiebeer.com/name. The deadline for the public to suggest a new name is Friday, Sept. 25."
The news release doesn't mention any prizes for the winning suggestion, but a case of the stuff would seem to be appropriate.
Even better, I will mention the winning entry in this column, thereby making you the envy of all your beer-drinking friends.
Joe Fairchild, of Thibodaux, says, "The Monday story about the relationship between cows feeding and fish biting reminded me of a similar relationship between cows and aircraft forced landings.
"We had a protocol in flying the T-28 (military training plane) for just about every possible emergency situation.
"If you lost an engine, you would always want to turn and land into the wind. Cows always stand with their tails into the wind, so naturally the protocol was 'In case of engine failure — look for a cow!’ ”
Postcards to Mom
Melvin Dean, of Killian, says, "Martin St. Romain's story of getting to Fort Chaffee, Arkansas, as a new soldier brought to mind my path there from the New Orleans Customs House.
"My memory was jogged a couple years ago when I surprisingly got back two November, 1961, postcards I wrote to my mother back home in Krotz Springs:
“ ‘Hello Mom: First night in the Army. I'm in charge of 9 other guys. Couldn't get 10 plane tickets to Tulsa, so spending the night at this place (Holiday Inn on Tulane Avenue). Plush room, TV, band playing later. $21.64 for 6 nice steak dinners, free for us. P.S. Bus load of girls in this place from Texas.’
" ‘Hello Mom: Left New Orleans 12:30, flew over Melville about 1:00 and arrived in Tulsa at 3:20. We'll leave about 6:30 (in a 5-ton Army truck) and get to Fort Chaffee about 7:30.’ ”
(I assume that was the last of plush rooms and Texas girls for a while. ...)
Special People Dept.
Jacob Daniel Plaisance, of Marrero, celebrates His 91st birthday Tuesday, Sept. 22.
Mary Vernoy, of Metairie, says, "Reading Ann LeBlanc’s story of 'What’s a levee?' in the Monday column reminded me of the time that I was on the phone with my insurance adjuster from some other state.
"In describing my accident, I stated that I was in the neutral ground, waiting to cross the southbound lanes.
"You guessed it. The next question from the adjuster was, 'What’s a neutral ground?'
“ ‘A wide median’ was the best I could do. I’m still not sure if he figured it out."